Now all roads lead to France and heavy is the tread
Of the living; but the dead returning lightly dance.
Edward Thomas, Roads

Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Aero-Naval War in Full-Color Illustrations

Among the different forms of warfare conducted between 1914 and 1918, one of the newest was the the combination of ships and aircraft. There were not a lot of photos that caught their interaction. Illustrators, however, were only constrained by their imagination. And, as you will see below, they were utterly captivated by the mixture of the planes, airships, and fleets of the combatants. Here are five selections from Tony Langley's collection.

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This Idealized Fleet Seems to Have Everything

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A German Seaplane Conducts a Rescue at Sea Under Fire

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A Surfaced Submarine (British?) Firing on a Zeppelin

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British Seaplane Stalking a U-boat

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A Mine Has Broken Away from Its Mooring, Threatening the Convoy;
A Seaplane Fires on It

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  1. I enjoyed these illustrations. Apologies for being picky, but isn't the ".....idealised French Fleet....." actually British? The ships has distinctive tripod masts and the aircraft has British roundels

    1. I believe you are correct and have modified the caption. What fooled me was that the illustration is from a French publication. I should have looked at it more closely.


  2. Don't forget, all these aircraft, airships, subs, warships carried pigeons for communications & rescue! Some legendary birds