Though it had a short coastline, by the 1850's the Austrians had put together an efficient navy of wind and steam powered vessels. They fought the Italians off the island of Lissa in 1866, one of the most studied nineteenth century naval battles. The influence of Lissa persisted for thirty-five years of naval architecture, for good and ill. The further history of the force, until 1919, is presented competently. The text is well illustrated and even has separate color plates of good quality and some merit. This is more of a history than a technical handbook, so the information on the vessels is incomplete. There has been a technical handbook competed in 2012.