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Encyclopedia > Galleon
A Spanish galleon.
A Spanish galleon.

A galleon was a large, multi-decked sailing ship used primarily by the nations of Europe from the 16th to 18th centuries. Whether used for war or commerce, they were generally armed with demi-culverin. A Spanish Galleon. ... A Spanish Galleon. ... Traditional wooden cutter under sail. ... World map showing the location of Europe. ... (15th century - 16th century - 17th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 16th century was that century which lasted from 1501 to 1600. ... (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... Demi-culverin is a seventeenth century term for a cannon which fired a nine solid pound shot (a culverin fired an eighteen pound shot); also known as a saker. ...


Galleons were an evolution of the caravel and carrack (or nao), for the new great ocean going voyages. A lowering of the forecastle and elongation of the hull gave an unprecedented level of stability in the water, and reduced wind resistance at the front, leading to a faster, more maneuverable vessel. The galleon differed from the older types primarily by being longer, lower and narrower, with a square tuck stern instead of a round tuck, and by having a snout or head projecting forward from the bows below the level of the forecastle. In Portugal at least, carracks were usually very large ships for their time (often over 1000 tons), while galleons were mostly under 500 tons, although the Manila galleons were to reach up to 2000 tons. Carracks tended to be lightly armed and used for transporting booty from the Far East, while galleons were purpose-built warships, and were stronger, more heavily armed, and also cheaper to build (5 galleons could cost around the same as 3 carracks) and were therefore a much better investment for use as warships. There are nationalistic disputes about the origin of the galleon, which are complicated by its evolutionary development, but each Atlantic sea-power developed types suited to their needs, while constantly learning from their rivals. Caravela Latina / Latin Caravel Caravela Redonda / Square-rigged Caravel A caravel is a small, highly maneuverable, two or three-masted ship used by the Portuguese and Spanish for long voyages of exploration beginning in the 15th century. ... The Santa Maria at anchor by Andries van Eertvelt, painted c. ... forecastle with figurehead Grand Turk Focsle of the Prince William, a modern square rigged ship, in the North Sea. ... A hull is the body or frame of a ship or boat. ... Look up ton in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Manila Galleons were Spanish galleons that sailed once or twice per year across the Pacific Ocean between Manila in the Philippines and Acapulco in New Spain (now Mexico). ... Invest redirects here. ...


The galleon was powered entirely by sail, carried on three to five masts, with a lateen sail continuing to be used on the last (usually third) mast. They were used in both military and trade applications, most famously in the Spanish treasure fleet, and the Manila Galleons. In fact, galleons were so versatile that a single vessel may have been refitted for wartime and peacetime roles several times during its lifespan. The galleon was the prototype of all three or more masted, square rigged ships, for over two and a half centuries, including the later full rigged ship. A gaff-rigged cutter flying a mainsail, staysail and genoa jib For other uses, see Sail (disambiguation). ... mizzen mast, mainmast and foremast Grand Turk The mast of a sailing ship is a tall vertical pole which supports the sails. ... A lateen (from Latin) is a triangular sail set on a long yard mounted at an angle on the mast, and running in a fore-and-aft direction. ... A treasure fleet is being loaded with riches. ... A full rigged ship or fully rigged ship is a square rigged sailing vessel with three or more masts, all of them square rigged. ...


The principal warships of the opposing English and Spanish fleets in the 1588 confrontation of the Spanish Armada were galleons, with the modified English "race built" galleons developed by John Hawkins proving decisive, while the more traditional Spanish galleons proved incredibly durable in the battles and in the great storm on the voyage home (most of the galleons survived). Motto (French) God and my right Anthem No official anthem - the United Kingdom anthem God Save the Queen is commonly used England() – on the European continent() – in the United Kingdom() Capital (and largest city) London (de facto) Official languages English (de facto)1 Unified  -  by Athelstan 927 AD  Area  -  Total... Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... John Hawkins Admiral Sir John Hawkins (also spelled as John Hawkyns) (Plymouth 1532 – November 12, 1595) was an English shipbuilder, naval administrator and commander, merchant, navigator, and slave trader. ...


Galleons were constructed from oak (for the keel), pine (for the masts) and various hardwoods for hull and decking. Hulls were usually carvel-built. The expenses involved in galleon construction were enormous. Hundreds of expert tradesmen (including carpenters, pitch-melters, blacksmiths, coopers, shipwrights, etc.) worked day and night for months before a galleon was seaworthy. Due to this, galleons were often funded by groups of wealthy businessmen who pooled resources for a new ship. Therefore, most galleons were originally consigned for trade, although those captured by rival nations were usually put into military service. Species See List of Quercus species The term oak can be used as part of the common name of any of several hundred species of trees and shrubs in the genus Quercus (from Latin oak tree), and some related genera, notably Cyclobalanopsis and Lithocarpus. ... // In boats and ships, keel can mean either of two parts; a structural element, or a hydrodynamic element; these parts overlap. ... Subgenera Subgenus Strobus Subgenus Ducampopinus Subgenus Pinus See Pinus classification for complete taxonomy to species level. ... Beech is a typical temperate zone hardwood For the record label, see Hardwood Records. ... A hull is the body or frame of a ship or boat. ... A deck is a permanent covering over a compartment or a hull[1] of a ship. ... In boat building, carvel is a method of constructing wooden boats by fixing planks to a frame so that the planks butt up against each other, gaining support from the frame and forming a smooth hull. ... Carpenter at work in Tennessee, June 1942. ... A blacksmith A blacksmith at work A blacksmith at work A blacksmiths fire Hot metal work from a blacksmith A blacksmith is a person who creates objects from iron or steel by forging the metal; i. ... Assembly of a barrel in progress A cooper readies, or rounds off, the end of a barrel using a coopers hand adze at the Van Ryn Brandy Cellar near Stellenbosch, South Africa Traditionally, a cooper is someone who makes wooden staved vessels of a conical form, of greater length than... Shipbuilding is the construction of ships. ...


The most common gun used aboard a galleon was the demi-culverin, although gun sizes up to demi-cannon were possible. Demi-culverin is a seventeenth century term for a cannon which fired a nine solid pound shot (a culverin fired an eighteen pound shot); also known as a saker. ... This article needs copyediting (checking for proper English spelling, grammar, usage, etc. ...


Due to extensive time often spent at sea and poor conditions on board, much of the crew often perished during the voyage; therefore advanced rigging systems were developed so that the vessel could be sailed home by an active sailing crew a fraction of the size aboard at departure. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...

Contents

Distinguishing features

The most distinguishing features of the galleon include the long beak, the lateen-rigged mizzenmasts, and the square gallery at the stern off of the captain's cabin. At sea, during the battle of the Spanish Armada, for example, English ships were distinguished by the red Cross of St. George flag flying on all masts, except the Tudor Rose was flown on the main-mizzen mast. These features can be seen in this photograph of a model of a mid-16th century English Tudor galleon. [1] Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... St Georges cross The St Georges Cross is a red cross on a white background. ... When Henry Tudor took the crown of England from Richard III in battle, he brought about the end of the Wars of the Roses between the House of Lancaster (Red Rose) and the House of York (White Rose). ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...


With the evolution from the galleon to the ship of the line, the long straight beak-head became curved, shorter and more upright, jib sails were added, and eventually the lateen-rigged mizzenmast was replaced with square sails and a spanker sail.[2] As the practice of boarding was reduced, the fore and aft castles became shorter to improve maneuverability.[3][www.greatgridlock.net/Sqrigg/galleon.html] Ships of the line were 1st, 2nd, or 3rd-rated ships in the rating system of the Royal Navy. ... A typical jib on a small yacht A jib is a triangular staysail set ahead of the foremost mast of a sailing boat. ... A spanker is either of two kinds of sail. ...


The galleon continued to be used until the early 18th century, when better designed and purpose-built vessels such as the brig and the ship of the line rendered it obsolete for trade and warfare respectively. (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Brigantine. ... Ships of the line were 1st, 2nd, or 3rd-rated ships in the rating system of the Royal Navy. ...


The oldest English drawings

The oldest known scale drawings in England are in a manuscript called "Fragments of Ancient Shipwrightry" made in about 1586 by Mathew Baker, a master-shipwright. This manuscript, held at the Pepysian Library, Magdalene College, Cambridge, provides an authentic reference for the size and shape of typical English galleons built during this period. Based on these plans, the Science Museum, London has built a 1:48 scale model ship that is an exemplar of galleons of this era.[4] [5] Mathew Baker (1530- 1615), was one of the most renowned Tudor shipwrights, and the first to put the practice of shipbuilding down on paper. ...


Notable galleons

  • Golden Hind, the ship in which Sir Francis Drake circumnavigated the globe 1577-1580
  • Ark Raleagh, the ship was designed and built by Sir Walter Raleigh. It was later chosen by Lord Howard, admiral of the fleet to be the flagship of the English fleet in the fight against the Spanish Armada in 1588 and was summiraly renamed the Ark Royal.
  • Revenge, a galleon built in 1577, the flagship of Sir Francis Drake in the Battle of the Spanish Armada in 1588, was captured by a Spanish fleet off Flores in the Azores in 1591 and sank while being sailed back to Spain.
  • San Martin, the Portuguese galleon, the flagship of Duke of Medina Sidonia, commander-in-chief of the Spanish Armada.
  • Triumph, the largest Elizabethan galleon; flagship of Sir Martin Frobisher in the Battle of the Spanish Armada
  • San Salvador flagship
  • Vasa, a 64-gun Swedish warship that sunk just one nautical mile from Stockholm in 1628 after capsizing on her maiden voyage. She was salvaged in 1961 and is now on display at the Vasa Museum.
  • Nuestra Señora de la Concepción, a Spanish Galleon which was also named Cacafuego for its strong cannons. It was captured by Sir Francis Drake in 1578 and all its treasures were brought to England. It was holding treasures mined in one year by the Spanish in the Americas.

The Golden Hind was an English ship best known for its global circumnavigation between 1577 and 1580, captained by Sir Francis Drake. ... Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral, (c. ... Alternatively, Professor Walter Raleigh was a scholar and author circa 1900. ... Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... HMS Ark Royal (R07) in Greenwich dock, London This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... HMS Revenge, built at a cost of £4,000 at the Royal Dockyard of Deptford in 1577 by Mathew Baker, Master Shipwright, was to usher in a new style of ship building that would revolutionize naval warfare for the next three hundred years. ... Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral, (c. ... Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... 1588 was a leap year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar or a leap year starting on Monday of the Julian calendar. ... Year 1591 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday of the 10-day slower Julian calendar). ... San Martin, built as a Portuguese galleon, became the flagship of Duke of Medina Sedonia, commander-in-chief of the Spanish Armada. ... Don Alonso Pérez de Guzmán el Bueno, 7th Duke of Medina Sidonia (es: Don Alonso Pérez de Guzmán el Bueno, séptimo duque de Medina Sidonia) (September 10, 1550 - 1615) was the commander-in-chief of the Spanish Armada. ... Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... Of the several ships carrying the same name, the first Triumph of record was a 60-gun English galleon built in Deptford in 1561-62 and launched in 1562*. Since she was built and served prior to the English Restoration of 1660, she did not actually carry the HMS prefix. ... Martin Frobisher by Cornelis Ketel. ... Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... Model of San Salvador by John Batchelor. ... Vasa from the side Vasa (also Regalskeppet Wasa, or Wasa, of 64 guns) is a famous warship built for King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden of the House of Vasa, between the years 1626 and 1628. ... The Vasa Museum (Vasa Museet), located on the island Djurgården in Stockholm, Sweden, is a maritime museum that displays the worlds only surviving 17th century ship, HMS Wasa. ... The Spanish name Cacafuego correctly means Shitfire, that which shits fire. When Sir Francis Drake captured the Spanish treasure galleon Cacafuego, the name was euphemistically translated into English as Spitfire. This name-related article is a stub. ... Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral, (c. ... Events January 31 - Battle of Gemblours - Spanish forces under Don John of Austria and Alexander Farnese defeat the Dutch. ...

Further readings

  • The Galleon (1990), Conway Maritime Press, ISBN 0-85177-546-2

See also

The Manila Galleons were Spanish galleons that sailed once or twice per year across the Pacific Ocean between Manila in the Philippines and Acapulco in New Spain (now Mexico). ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
  • The Development of the Full-Rigged Ship From the Carrack to the Full-Rigger

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