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Galleons
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Salty Dog
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:37 am    Post subject: Galleons Reply with quote

Although large galleons and men-of-war are the normal types of pirate ships shown in the movies they are not often referred to in the works of fiction that have shaped our ideas about pirates. The Hispaniola in which Jim Hawkins and his companions sail to Treasure Island is a two masted schooner, as is the Avenger in Byron's The Corsair. In Peter Pan Captain Hook sails in a two masted big, and in Peter Duck the Swallows and the Amazons are chased by the Viper another schooner. Although larger ships occasionally feature in works of fiction, such as The Pirate by Walter Scott for example, it is for other more practical reasons that larger ships are more common in films. One of the principal problems with featuring smaller vessels in films is the limited deck space on which to put cameras, lights, sound equipment, director, special effects team and all the other members of the film crew, even without the actors trying to perform their scene. If larger vessels are more practical for the movies they are also of course more spectacular. In a book we can be easily impressed by a well written description of a schooner with fresh painted blocks and pulleys, keen graceful lines, taut manilla rigging, served and parcelled shrouds and sails of clean white canvas, in a film such details would not be seen, so size becomes more important to awe the viewer.
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Salty Dog
Helmsman
Posts: 5956



103214 Gold -

PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Historically pirates seem to have preferred small sloops and schooners for their speed, manoeuvrability and shallow draught which enabled them to sail up rivers and over shoals. Lightly armed, but heavily manned these ships would be enough to overcome all but the most heavily armed merchantmen, and would be fast enough to flee from naval warships. However, there were some pirates who did sail in larger ships. Avery's Fancy was a privateer ship of 30 guns, probably of frigate design, and Bartholomew Roberts' last ship carried 40 guns and was large enough to give battle to HMS Swallow for a couple of hours. The most famous large pirate ship is probably Blackbeard's Queen Anne's Revenge, described by Charles Johnson as a "great ship" and "man of war". The Queen Anne's Revenge had originally been a French slave ship until captured by Blackbeard, who fitted her out with 40 guns and terrorised the American coast with her before deliberately running her aground off North Carolina.
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