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The Infernal Diver

The Infernal Diver.

Until now it has been erroneously believed that Augustus Siebe was the inventor of the standard diving helmet. He was, in fact, the leading manufacturer. Siebe himself never claimed to be the inventor but with the passage of time and the recognised excellence of his manufacturing standards, Siebe's name superseded that of the true inventors, John and Charles Deane.

This book reinstates the Deane brothers as inventors of the diving helmet and traces their lives from humble beginnings in east London, through their sea-going careers, their invention and development of the diving helmet and dress and their subsequent underwater exploits.

From their modest beginnings in Whitstable, Kent, they conducted their various underwater activities including treasure-hunting, wreck clearance, salvage, marine civil engineering and military support. The wrecks of the Mary Rose and the Royal George feature prominently in their lives.

Their invention was of enormous significance for the future of underwater operations. The diving dress and helmet were enthusiastically embraced by the Royal Engineers and Royal Navy who used them to great advantage in the Crimea. They commissioned John Deane as their resident diving and explosives expert during the campaign. It was in the Crimea, due to his impressive success at blowing up underwater obstacles that he earned the title, "The Infernal Diver". This book charts the successes and failures, the triumphs and tragedies of the Deane brothers' remarkable lives. Their story rewrites an important and hitherto mis-represented part of diving history - the birth of the diving helmet and dress; the origin of today's international diving industry.

By John Bevan.

Engelstalig, kleuren tekeningen.

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