1st.ed., 2005. 120 pp., profusely illustrated with photos., drawings, etc. (some cold.). D.j., 25 x 22cm. FINE. Boarding actions and desperate hand-to-hand fighting was a common factor of naval actions during the age of sail, and edged weapons rather than firearms made the difference between victory and defeat. These bloody close-quarter combats produced distinctive versions of axes, pikes, cutlasses and swords for naval warfare. In addition, officers had a variety of presentation and dress swords. This is a survey of such weapons as used in the Royal Navy and the fledging U.S. Navy from the outbreak of the American War of Independence in 1775, to the close of the American Civil War in 1865. It reveals how British weapons were initially a major source of inspiration for the new naval service of the U.S. Profusely illustrated, the book devotes whole chapters to shipboard axes, pikes and other polearms, swords and cutlasses, etc. Sword decoration is covered, so too their manufacture.