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John Seller
Practical navigation . . .
London, ca. 1670
Slaughter 3056

The handwritten notation on the verso of this old title page - "This Book Bought on Board the Lioness, Sept: 19, 1770" - throws a little light on the informal distribution of these popular instructional books on navigation, which were certainly available in Seller's shops in London and Wapping. Navigation manuals were also possibly part of the lesser goods on board a naval supply ship. However, at the time this book was purchased, it was over a century old, and so may represent a collector's purchase of a curiosity from another sailor.

The Lioness was a storeship, carrying spars, timber, cordage, tar, etc., or naval stores. She worked for the Royal Navy from 1777 to 1779 and may previously have been a merchant ship in private hands, if, indeed, this is the same Lioness. In 1780, she was hulked, or dismasted, and became a convalescent ship, docked at Portsmouth; she was sold, probably for scrap, in 1783.

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EPO, 1998