The Mastery of the Air - William J. Claxton - Страница 1 из 181


THE MASTERY OF THE AIR
By William J. Claxton
PREFACE
This book makes no pretence of going minutely into the technical and
scientific sides of human flight: rather does it deal mainly with the
real achievements of pioneers who have helped to make aviation what it
is to-day.
My chief object has been to arouse among my readers an intelligent
interest in the art of flight, and, profiting by friendly criticism
of several of my former works, I imagine that this is best obtained by
setting forth the romance of triumph in the realms of an element which
has defied man for untold centuries, rather than to give a mass of
scientific principles which appeal to no one but the expert.
So rapid is the present development of aviation that it is difficult to
keep abreast with the times. What is new to-day becomes old to-morrow.
The Great War has given a tremendous impetus to the strife between the
warring nations for the mastery of the air, and one can but give a rough
and general impression of the achievements of naval and military airmen
on the various fronts.
Finally, I have tried to bring home the fact that the fascinating
progress of aviation should not be confined entirely to the airman and
constructor of air-craft; in short, this progress is not a record of
events in which the mass of the nation have little personal concern, but
of a movement in which each one of us may take an active and intelligent
part.
I have to thank various aviation firms, airmen, and others who
have kindly come to my assistance, either with the help of valuable


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