Clowes, W Laird

Tagged: Author

(1856-1905) UK author who specialized in naval history, sometimes controversially (usually writing as Nautilus); a nonfiction study, Black America: A Study of the Ex-Slave and his Master (1891), predicts a twentieth-century race war. His work of sf interest is exclusively nautical: The Great Naval War of 1887 (1886 St James Gazette; 1887 chap) with Commander C N Robinson, both anonymous, detailedly depicts a French naval victory in a Future War against Britain; The Captain of the "Mary Rose": A Tale of Tomorrow (1892), also set in the immediate Near Future, reverses the outcome of the previous tale; in The Great Peril and How it was Averted (1893) an American magnate attempts to conquer Britain with the use of Inventions like the Phloisbophone, which demoralizingly projects voices at a great volume, but is defeated in the end; The Double Emperor: A Story of a Vagabond Cunarder (1894), another Satire against America, projects another attempt to take over civilized parts, this time mostly through the use of confidence tricks; and Trafalgar Re-Fought (1905) with Sir Alan Hughes Burgoyne relocates the Battle of Trafalgar in the twentieth century, demonstrating in this fashion the timeless genius of Lord Nelson. [JC]

Sir William Laird Clowes

born London: 1 February 1856

died St Leonards, Sussex: 14 August 1905

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