Ah! Finally, it arrived! The new book, ordered so long ago and awaited long before that. Finally, it is here!
For years, two authors have been at war with each other, and every new book they publish is a new attack in this extended conflict. Never openly, of course, or as the main topic of a book specifically dedicated to broadsiding the adversary. But a war is waged, and it is waged in the footnotes. If you know to look for it, it is as clear as day; if not, then the books are just about the things they are about.
She did not, admittedly, care that much about the early development of international maritime law in 16th century Europe. But this was apparently what the author decided to write about, and so it was a small price to pay to get at the numerous and extensive footnotes.