Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Medieval Boats, Skiffs and Ships

Side of Tournai Font in Winchester Cathedral

Wikipedia Cog (ship)
[Kug or Kugge]

Wikipedia Medieval ships

Wikipedia Traditional Fishing Boat

Wikipedia Galley (Medieval)

Wikipedia Longship

Snecca or Snekkja [Snake or Serpent]

Sea Battle off Sandwich - Chronica Majora by Matthew Paris

Richard Brooks (2014). The Knight Who Saved England: William Marshal and the French Invasion, 1217. Osprey Publishing. pp. 241–. ISBN 978-1-84908-550-2.

Auger, B. 2011. La représentation des bateaux en Europe entre le VIIIè et le XIIIè siècle.. [e-book] Grenoble: Université de Grenoble.

Robert Odell Bork; Andrea Kann (1 January 2008). The Art, Science, and Technology of Medieval Travel. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. pp. 1–. ISBN 978-0-7546-6307-2.

Clifford Rogers (June 2010). "Galleys"The Oxford Encyclopedia of Medieval Warfare and Military Technology. Oxford University Press. pp. 1–. ISBN 978-0-19-533403-6.

Norse Herring Boat

Wikipedia Yole

Smyth, H. Warington (1906)
Mast and sail in Europe and Asia


Boat used by William the Conqueror depicted in Bayeaux Tapestry

John Block Friedman; Kristen Mossler Figg (4 July 2013). Trade, Travel, and Exploration in the Middle Ages: An Encyclopedia. Routledge. pp. 553–. ISBN 978-1-135-59094-9.

Craig Lambert; Craig L. Lambert (2011). Shipping the Medieval Military: English Maritime Logistics in the Fourteenth Century. Boydell Press. pp. 7–. ISBN 978-1-84383-654-4

Craig Lambert; Craig L. Lambert (2011). Shipping the Medieval Military: English Maritime Logistics in the Fourteenth Century. Boydell Press. pp. 7–. ISBN 978-1-84383-654-4.

Louis Sicking; Darlene Abreu-Ferreira (2009). Beyond the Catch: Fisheries of the North Atlantic, the North Sea and the Baltic, 900-1850. BRILL. pp. 91–. ISBN 978-90-04-16973-9. Navis I Database Navis II Database

Cymbula [Cumbula] Regia (Royal Barge)


Franklin, C. A. (1985). Caulking techniques in Northern and Central European ships and boats, 1500 B. C.- A. D. 1940 (Master's thesis, Texas A&M University).

Michael L. Ryder. "Animal Hair in Medieval Ship Caulking Throws Light on Livestock Types." Environmental Archaeology 2013; 2(1), 61-66.

Deforce, K., Allemeersch, L., Stieperaere, H., & Haneca, K. (2014). Tracking ancient ship routes through the analysis of caulking material from shipwrecks? The case study of two 14th century cogs from Doel (northern Belgium). Journal of Archaeological Science43, 299-314.

The Wrecking of the White Ship (La Blanche-Nef)
Night of the 25th November 1120

BL Royal 20 A. ii, f. 6v. Henry I & White Ship

The heir to the English throne, son of Henry I, Prince William, together with the flower of English society gathered around him, drowned on that night. The ship they were in, the White Ship, a  50-oared single bank galley,  foundered on some rocks which lay just beneath the surface of the water in the race of Catteville just outside the harbour of Barfleur. The White Ship struck one of the rocks and sank. During this voyage, William was accompanied by some 300 companions including 140 knights and 18 nobles, his half-brother Richard, his half-sister Matilda Countess of Perche, his cousins Stephen and Matilda of Blois, nephew of the Emperor Henry V of Germany, the young Earl of Chester and most of the heirs of the great landowners of England and Normandy. The atmosphere was merry; the Prince had filled the boat with barrels of wine. Both passengers and crew soon became drunk, sufficiently enough to chase away a group of clerics who had came to bless the journey just before they set sail. Some of the intended passengers, including Stephen of Blois [later king of England] , who was suffering from diarrhoea, sensing complications, luckily decided to take another boat.
Galley with Single-Bank of Oars

Arthur Bailey Thompson (1865). The Victoria history of England: from the landing of Julius Caesar, B.C. 54, to the marriage of H.R.H. Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, A.D. 1863. Routledge, Warne & Routledge. pp. 59–.

L'Epoque ou Soirées européennes: formant le cours le plus complet de la littérature européenne et asiatique.  Naufrage du Vaisseau Blanc. Libr. des Beaux-Arts. pp. 309–12.

Barfleur, un naufrage, le 25 novembre 1120, la Blanche Nef

Société des antiquaires de Normandie (1825). Mémoires de la Société des antiquaires de Normandie. Société des antiquaires de Normandie. pp. 336–9.

Dorling, H. Taprell  (1912) All about ships

The Monthly Magazine: Or, British Register .... 1823. pp. 299–.

Herbert Fry; George Bradshaw (1865). Bradshaw's hand-book to Normandy and the Channel Islands. pp. 77–.
Jacques Nicolas Augustin Thierry (1841). History of the conquest of England by the Normans [tr. by C.C. Hamilton].. pp. 143–.

George C. V. Holmes (1 July 2006). Ancient and Modern Ships V1: Wooden Sailing Ships. Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4286-4751-0.

Bowen, Frank C.(1927) The sea; its history and romance. p.18

Sarah's History Place Blogspot

Tides, Tidal Flows and Currents in the English Channel

Curious winds and tides occur in the English Channel and North Sea. These seas are subject to high tidal ranges and the funelling effect of the English Channel as it narrows in the Straits of Dover. There are strong anticlockwise tidals streams and flows. The prevailing winds blow from the South West. These conditions can be used to effect by experienced navigators enabling them swiftly to cross the Channel over from Flanders to the English ports such as Sandwich and Dover and vice versa. Extreme adverse conditions, however, could occur if the winds were to blow in the opposite direction to the tidal flows. Fogs could could also arise blocking visibility. At the same time huge volumes of sands and gravel were shifiting from the Channel into the North Sea creating hazards like large gravel and sand banks in shallow seas and shoals upon which boats might be stranded where they would have to wait for the next high tide to lift them off. Port entrances were gradually silting up over centuries. River mouths could be blocked by huge mudbanks. Storms could arise creating choppy seas.

Navigators in these times would have to rely on their own knowledge and skill at handling the adverse conditions. Navigation generally required sight of the shoreline. There were no lighthouses, few shorelights, and few landmarks apart from cliffs, castles or church towers. There were no compasses or accurate navigation instruments. Some parts of the English Channel had dangerous rocks upon which boats could founder.


Ipswich Town Seal ca 1200


Cognitive Maps of Time and Tide Among Medieval Seafarers
Charles O. Frake
New Series, Vol. 20, No. 2 (Jun., 1985), pp. 254-270

Samuel Haughton (1865). Manual of tides and tidal currents. Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts & Green. pp. 1–.

Luc Cuyvers (1 January 1986). The Strait of Dover. BRILL. pp. 17–. ISBN 90-247-3252-2.

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