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Sailing ship

For the song, see Der Kommissar (album). "Sailing vessel" redirects here. For sail-powered vehicles, see Wind-powered vehicle

A sailing ship is a sea-going vessel that uses sails mounted on masts to harness the power of wind and propel the vessel. There is a variety of sail plans that propel sailing ships, employing square-rigged or fore-and-aft sails. Some ships carry square sails on each mast—the brig and full-rigged ship, said to be "ship-rigged" when there are three or more masts. Others carry only fore-and-aft sails on each mast, for instance some schooners. Still others employ a combination of square and fore-and-aft sails, including the barque, barquentine, and brigantine.

A barque—a three-masted sailing ship with square sails on the first two masts (fore and main) and fore-and-aft sails on the mizzenmast
Sail plans
Full-rigged ship
Barque
Barquentine
Schooner
Showing three-masted examples, progressing from square sails on each to all fore-and-aft sails on each.

Early sailing ships were used for river and coastal waters in Ancient Egypt and the Mediterranean. Blue water sea-going sailing ships were first independently invented by the Austronesian peoples with the fore-and-aft crab-claw sail as well as the culturally unique catamaran and outrigger boat technologies. These enabled the rapid Austronesian expansion into the islands of the Indo-Pacific since 3000 BC from an origin in Taiwan, as well as facilitated the first maritime trading network in the Indo-Pacific from at least 1500 BC. Later developments in Asia produced the junk and dhow—vessels that incorporated innovations absent in European ships of the time.

European sailing ships with predominantly square rigs became prevalent during the Age of Discovery, when they crossed oceans between continents and around the world. In the European Age of Sail, a full-rigged ship was one with a bowsprit and three masts, each of which consists of a lower, top, and topgallant mast. Most sailing ships were merchantmen, but the Age of Sail also saw the development of large fleets of well-armed warships. The Age of Sail waned with the advent of steam-powered ships, which did not depend upon a favourable wind.

Contents

Further information: Ship § History

The first sailing vessels were developed for use in the South China Sea by the Austronesian peoples, and also independently in lands abutting the western Mediterranean Sea by the 2nd millennium BC. In Asia, early vessels were equipped with crab claw sails—with a spar on the top and bottom of the sail, arranged fore-and-aft when needed. In the Mediterranean, vessels were powered downwind by square sails that supplemented propulsion by oars. Sailing ships evolved differently in the South China Sea and in the Indian Ocean, where fore-and-aft sail plans were developed into several centuries AD.

By the time of the Age of Discovery—starting in the 15th century—square-rigged, multi-masted vessels were the norm and were guided by navigation techniques that included the magnetic compass and making sightings of the sun and stars that allowed transoceanic voyages. The Age of Sail reached its peak in the 18th and 19th centuries with large, heavily armed battleships and merchant sailing ships.

Sailing and steam ships coexisted for much of the 19th century. The steamers of the early part of the century had very poor fuel efficiency and were suitable only for a small number of roles, such as towing sailing ships and providing short route passenger and mail services. Both sailing and steam ships saw large technological improvements over the century. Ultimately the two large stepwise improvements in fuel efficiency of compound and then triple-expansion steam engines made the steamship, by the 1880s, able to compete in the vast majority of trades. Commercial sail still continued into the 20th century, with the last ceasing to trade by c 1960.: 106–111: 89

Before 1700

Initially sails provided supplementary power to ships with oars, because the sails were not designed to sail to windward. In the Austronesian Indo-Pacific, sailing ships were equipped with fore-and-aft rigs that made sailing to windward possible. Later square-rigged vessels too were able to sail to windward, and became the standard for European ships through the Age of Discovery when vessels ventured around Africa to India, to the Americas and around the world. Later during this period—in the late 15th century—"ship-rigged" vessels with multiple square sails on each mast appeared and became common for sailing ships.

Mediterranean and Baltic

Roman warship with sails, oars, and a steering oar

Sailing ships in the Mediterranean region date back to at least 3000 BC, when Egyptians used a bipod mast to support a single square sail on a vessel that mainly relied on multiple paddlers. Later the mast became a single pole, and paddles were supplanted with oars. Such vessels plied both the Nile and the Mediterranean coast. The Minoan civilization of Crete may have been the world's first thalassocracy brought to prominence by sailing vessels dating to before 1800 BC (Middle Minoan IIB). Between 1000 BC and 400 AD, the Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans developed ships that were powered by square sails, sometimes with oars to supplement their capabilities. Such vessels used a steering oar as a rudder to control direction. Fore-and-aft sails started appearing on sailing vessels in the Mediterranean ca.1200 AD, an influence of rigs introduced in Asia and the Indian Ocean.

Starting in the 8th century in Denmark, Vikings were building clinker-constructed longships propelled by a single, square sail, when practical, and oars, when necessary. A related craft was the knarr, which plied the Baltic and North Seas, using primarily sail power. The windward edge of the sail was stiffened with a beitass, a pole that fitted into the lower corner of the sail, when sailing close to the wind.

South China Sea & Austronesia

A carved stone relief panel showing a Borobudur ship from 8th century Java, a typical ancient trading ship with tanja sails and outriggers used by Austronesian peoples in Maritime Southeast Asia
Chinese junk Keying with a center-mounted rudder post, c. 1848

The first sea-going sailing ships in human history were developed by the Austronesian peoples from what is now Taiwan. Their invention of catamarans, outriggers, and crab claw sails enabled the Austronesian Expansion at around 3000 to 1500 BC. From Taiwan, they rapidly colonized the islands of Maritime Southeast Asia, then sailed further onwards to Micronesia, Island Melanesia, Polynesia, and Madagascar. Austronesian rigs were distinctive in that they had spars supporting both the upper and lower edges of the sails (and sometimes in between), in contrast to western rigs which only had a spar on the upper edge.

Early Austronesian sailors also influenced the development of sailing technologies in Sri Lanka and Southern India through the Austronesian maritime trade network of the Indian Ocean, the precursor to the spice trade route and the maritime silk road.Austronesians established the first maritime trade network with ocean-going merchant ships which plied the early trade routes from Southeast Asia from at least 1500 BC. They reached as far northeast as Japan and as far west as eastern Africa. They colonized Madagascar and their trade routes were the precursors to the spice trade route and the maritime silk road. They mainly facilitated trade of goods from China and Japan to South India, Sri Lanka, the Persian Gulf, and the Red Sea. An important invention in this region was the fore-and-aft rig, which made sailing against the wind possible. Such sails may have originated at least several hundred years BC. Balance lugsails and tanja sails also originated from this region. Vessels with such sails explored and traded along the western coast of Africa. This type of sail propagated to the west and influenced Arab lateen designs.

Large Austronesian trading ships with as many as four sails were recorded by Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) scholars as the kunlun bo (崑崙舶, lit. "ship of the Kunlun people"). They were booked by Chinese Buddhist pilgrims for passage to Southern India and Sri Lanka. Bas reliefs of Sailendran and Srivijayan large merchant ships with various configurations of tanja sails and outriggers are also found in the Borobudur temple, dating back to the 8th century CE.

By the 10th century AD, the Song Dynasty started building the first Chinese junks, which were adopted from the design of the Javanese djongs. The junk rig in particular, became associated with Chinese coast-hugging trading ships. Junks in China were constructed from teak with pegs and nails; they featured watertight compartments and acquired center-mounted tillers and rudders. These ships became the basis for the development of Chinese warships during the Mongol Yuan Dynasty, and were used in the unsuccessful Mongol invasions of Japan and Java.

The Ming dynasty (1368–1644) saw the use of junks as long-distance trading vessels. Chinese Admiral Zheng He reportedly sailed to India, Arabia, and southern Africa on a trade and diplomatic mission. Literary lore suggests that his largest vessel, the "Treasure Ship", measured 400 feet (120 m) in length and 150 feet (46 m) in width, whereas modern research suggests that it was unlikely to have exceeded 200 feet (61 m) in length.

Indian Ocean

Further information: Dhow § History

The Indian Ocean was the venue for increasing trade between India and Africa between 1200 and 1500. The vessels employed would be classified as dhows with lateen rigs. During this interval such vessels grew in capacity from 100 to 400 tonnes. Dhows were often built with teak planks from India and Southeast Asia, sewn together with coconut husk fiber—no nails were employed. This period also saw the implementation of center-mounted rudders, controlled with a tiller.

Global exploration

Main article: Carrack
Replica of Ferdinand Magellan's carrack, Victoria, which completed the first global circumnavigation.

Technological advancements that were important to the Age of Discovery in the 15th century were the adoption of the magnetic compass and advances in ship design.

The compass was an addition to the ancient method of navigation based on sightings of the sun and stars. The compass was invented by Chinese. It had been used for navigation in China by the 11th century and was adopted by the Arab traders in the Indian Ocean. The compass spread to Europe by the late 12th or early 13th century. Use of the compass for navigation in the Indian Ocean was first mentioned in 1232. The Europeans used a "dry" compass, with a needle on a pivot. The compass card was also a European invention.

At the beginning of the 15th century, the carrack was the most capable European ocean-going ship. It was carvel-built and large enough to be stable in heavy seas. It was capable of carrying a large cargo and the provisions needed for very long voyages. Later carracks were square-rigged on the foremast and mainmast and lateen-rigged on the mizzenmast. They had a high rounded stern with large aftcastle, forecastle and bowsprit at the stem. As the predecessor of the galleon, the carrack was one of the most influential ship designs in history; while ships became more specialized in the following centuries, the basic design remained unchanged throughout this period.

Ships of this era were only able to sail approximately 70° into the wind and tacked from one side to the other across the wind with difficulty, which made it challenging to avoid shipwrecks when near shores or shoals during storms. Nonetheless, such vessels reached India around Africa with Vasco da Gama, the Americas with Christopher Columbus, and around the world under Ferdinand Magellan.

1700 to 1850

1798 sea battle between a French and British man-of-war
A late-19th-century American clipper ship
The five-masted Preussen was the largest sailing ship ever built.
Schooners became favored for some coast-wise commerce after 1850—they enabled a small crew to handle sails.

Sailing ships became longer and faster over time, with ship-rigged vessels carrying taller masts with more square sails. Other sail plans emerged, as well, that had just fore-and-aft sails (schooners), or a mixture of the two (brigantines, barques and barquentines).

Warships

Cannon were present in the 14th century, but did not become common at sea until they could be reloaded quickly enough to be reused in the same battle. The size of a ship required to carry a large number of cannon made oar-based propulsion impossible, and warships came to rely primarily on sails. The sailing man-of-war emerged during the 16th century.

By the middle of the 17th century, warships were carrying increasing numbers of cannon on three decks. Naval tactics evolved to bring each ship's firepower to bear in a line of battle—coordinated movements of a fleet of warships to engage a line of ships in the enemy fleet. Carracks with a single cannon deck evolved into galleons with as many as two full cannon decks, which evolved into the man-of-war, and further into the ship of the line—designed for engaging the enemy in a line of battle. One side of a ship was expected to shoot broadsides against an enemy ship at close range. In the 18th century, the small and fast frigate and sloop-of-war—too small to stand in the line of battle—evolved to convoy trade, scout for enemy ships and blockade enemy coasts.

Clippers

Main article: Clipper

The term "clipper" started to be used in the first quarter of the 19th century. It was applied to sailing vessels designed primarily for speed. Only a small proportion of sailing vessels could properly have the term applied to them.: 33

Early examples were the schooners and brigantines, called Baltimore clippers, used for blockade running or as privateers in the War of 1812 and afterwards for smuggling opium or illegally transporting slaves. Larger clippers, usually ship or barque rigged and with a different hull design, were built for the California trade (from east coast USA ports to San Francisco) after gold was discovered in 1848 – the associated ship-building boom lasted until 1854.: 7, 9, 13.14

Clippers were built for trade between the United Kingdom and China after the East India Company lost its monopoly in 1834. The primary cargo was tea, and sailing ships, particularly tea clippers, dominated this long distance route until the development of fuel efficient steamships coincided with the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869.: 9–10, 209

Other clippers worked on the Australian immigrant routes or, in smaller quantities, in any role where a fast passage secured higher rates of freight or passenger fares. Whilst many clippers were ship rigged, the definition is not limited to any rig.: 10–11

Clippers were generally built for a specific trade: those in the California trade had to withstand the seas of Cape Horn, whilst Tea Clippers were designed for the lighter and contrary winds of the China Sea. All had fine lines, with a well streamlined hull and carried a large sail area. To get the best of this, a skilled and determined master was needed in command.: 16–19

Copper sheathing

Main article: Copper sheathing

During the Age of Sail, ships' hulls were under frequent attack by shipworm (which affected the structural strength of timbers), and barnacles and various marine weeds (which affected ship speed). Since before the common era, a variety of coatings had been applied to hulls to counter this effect, including pitch, wax, tar, oil, sulfur and arsenic. In the mid 18th century copper sheathing was developed as a defense against such bottom fouling. After coping with problems of galvanic deterioration of metal hull fasteners, sacrificial anodes were developed, which were designed to corrode, instead of the hull fasteners. The practice became widespread on naval vessels, starting in the late18th century, and on merchant vessels, starting in the early 19th century, until the advent of iron and steel hulls.

After 1850

Iron-hulled sailing ships, often referred to as "windjammers" or "tall ships", represented the final evolution of sailing ships at the end of the Age of Sail. They were built to carry bulk cargo for long distances in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. They were the largest of merchant sailing ships, with three to five masts and square sails, as well as other sail plans. They carried lumber, guano, grain or ore between continents. Later examples had steel hulls. Iron-hulled sailing ships were mainly built from the 1870s to 1900, when steamships began to outpace them economically, due to their ability to keep a schedule regardless of the wind. Steel hulls also replaced iron hulls at around the same time. Even into the twentieth century, sailing ships could hold their own on transoceanic voyages such as Australia to Europe, since they did not require bunkerage for coal nor fresh water for steam, and they were faster than the early steamers, which usually could barely make 8 knots (15 km/h).

The four-masted, iron-hulled ship, introduced in 1875 with the full-rigged County of Peebles, represented an especially efficient configuration that prolonged the competitiveness of sail against steam in the later part of the 19th century. The largest example of such ships was the five-masted, full-rigged ship Preussen, which had a load capacity of 7,800 tonnes. Ships transitioned from all sail to all steam-power from the mid 19th century into the 20th. Five-masted Preussen used steam power for driving the winches, hoists and pumps, and could be manned by a crew of 48, compared with four-masted Kruzenshtern, which has a crew of 257.

Coastal top-sail schooners with a crew as small as two managing the sail handling became an efficient way to carry bulk cargo, since only the fore-sails required tending while tacking and steam-driven machinery was often available for raising the sails and the anchor.

In the 20th century, the DynaRig allowed central, automated control of all sails in a manner that obviates the need for sending crew aloft. This was developed in the 1960s in Germany as a low-carbon footprint propulsion alternative for commercial ships. The rig automatically sets and reefs sails; its mast rotates to align the sails with the wind. The sailing yachts Maltese Falcon and Black Pearl employ the rig.

Every sailing ship has a sail plan that is adapted to the purpose of the vessel and the ability of the crew; each has a hull, rigging and masts to hold up the sails that use the wind to power the ship; the masts are supported by standing rigging and the sails are adjusted by running rigging.

Hull

Hull form lines, lengthwise and in cross-section from a 1781 plan

Hull shapes for sailing ships evolved from being relatively short and blunt to being longer and finer at the bow. By the nineteenth century, ships were built with reference to a half model, made from wooden layers that were pinned together. Each layer could be scaled to the actual size of the vessel in order to lay out its hull structure, starting with the keel and leading to the ship's ribs. The ribs were pieced together from curved elements, called futtocks and tied in place until the installation of the planking. Typically, planking was caulked with a tar-impregnated yarn made from manila or hemp to make the planking watertight. Starting in the mid-19th century, iron was used first for the hull structure and later for its watertight sheathing.

Masts

Diagram of rigging on a square-rigged ship.

Until the mid-19th century all vessels' masts were made of wood formed from a single or several pieces of timber which typically consisted of the trunk of a conifer tree. From the 16th century, vessels were often built of a size requiring masts taller and thicker than could be made from single tree trunks. On these larger vessels, to achieve the required height, the masts were built from up to four sections (also called masts), known in order of rising height above the decks as the lower, top, topgallant and royal masts. Giving the lower sections sufficient thickness necessitated building them up from separate pieces of wood. Such a section was known as a made mast, as opposed to sections formed from single pieces of timber, which were known as pole masts. Starting in the second half of the 19th century, masts were made of iron or steel.

For ships with square sails the principal masts, given their standard names in bow to stern (front to back) order, are:

  • Fore-mast – the mast nearest the bow, or the mast forward of the main-mast with sections: fore-mast lower, fore topmast, and fore topgallant mast
  • Main-mast – the tallest mast, usually located near the center of the ship with sections: main-mast lower, main topmast, main topgallant mast, royal mast (sometimes)
  • Mizzen-mast – the aft-most mast. Typically shorter than the fore-mast with sections: mizzen-mast lower, mizzen topmast, and mizzen topgallant mast.

Sails

Main article: Sail
Different sail types.

Each rig is configured in a sail plan, appropriate to the size of the sailing craft. Both square-rigged and fore-and-aft rigged vessels have been built with a wide range of configurations for single and multiple masts.

Types of sail that can be part of a sail plan can be broadly classed by how they are attached to the sailing craft:

  • To a stay – Sails attached to stays, include jibs, which are attached to forestays and staysails, which are mounted on other stays (typically wire cable) that support other masts from the bow aft.
  • To a mast – Fore-and-aft sails directly attached to the mast at the luff include gaff-rigged quadrilateral and Bermuda triangular sails.
  • To a spar – Sails attached to a spar include both square sails and such fore-and-aft quadrilateral sails as lug rigs, junk and spritsails and such triangular sails as the lateen, and the crab claw.

Rigging

Square sail edges and corners (top). Running rigging (bottom).

Sailing ships have standing rigging to support the masts and running rigging to raise the sails and control their ability to draw power from the wind. The running rigging has three main roles, to support the sail structure, to shape the sail and to adjust its angle to the wind. Square-rigged vessels require more controlling lines than fore-and-aft rigged ones.

Standing rigging

Sailing ships prior to the mid-19th century used wood masts with hemp-fiber standing rigging. As rigs became taller by the end of the 19th century, masts relied more heavily on successive spars, stepped one atop the other to form the whole, from bottom to top: the lower mast, top mast, and topgallant mast. This construction relied heavily on support by a complex array of stays and shrouds. Each stay in either the fore-and-aft or athwartships direction had a corresponding one in the opposite direction providing counter-tension. Fore-and-aft the system of tensioning started with the stays that were anchored in front each mast. Shrouds were tensioned by pairs deadeyes, circular blocks that had the large-diameter line run around them, whilst multiple holes allowed smaller line—lanyard—to pass multiple times between the two and thereby allow tensioning of the shroud. After the mid-19th century square-rigged vessels were equipped with iron wire standing rigging, which was superseded with steel wire in the late 19th century.: 46

Running rigging

Halyards, used to raise and lower the yards, are the primary supporting lines. In addition, square rigs have lines that lift the sail or the yard from which it is suspended that include: brails, buntlines, lifts and leechlines. Bowlines and clew lines shape a square sail. To adjust the angle of the sail to wind braces are used to adjust the fore and aft angle of a yard of a square sail, while sheets attach to the clews (bottom corners) of a sail to control the sail's angle to the wind. Sheets run aft, whereas tacks are used to haul the clew of a square sail forward.

Seamen aloft, shortening sail

The crew of a sailing ship is divided between officers (the captain and his subordinates) and seamen or ordinary hands. An able seaman was expected to "hand, reef, and steer" (handle the lines and other equipment, reef the sails, and steer the vessel). The crew is organized to stand watch—the oversight of the ship for a period—typically four hours each. Richard Henry Dana Jr. and Herman Melville each had personal experience aboard sailing vessels of the 19th century.

Merchant vessel

Dana described the crew of the merchant brig, Pilgrim, as comprising six to eight common sailors, four specialist crew members (the steward, cook, carpenter and sailmaker), and three officers: the captain, the first mate and the second mate. He contrasted the American crew complement with that of other nations on whose similarly sized ships the crew might number as many as 30. Larger merchant vessels had larger crews.

Warship

Melville described the crew complement of the frigate warship, United States, as about 500—including officers, enlisted personnel and 50 Marines. The crew was divided into the starboard and larboard watches. It was also divided into three tops, bands of crew responsible for setting sails on the three masts; a band of sheet-anchor men, whose station was forward and whose job was to tend the fore-yard, anchors and forward sails; the after guard, who were stationed aft and tended the mainsail, spanker and man the various sheets, controlling the position of the sails; the waisters, who were stationed midships and had menial duties attending the livestock, etc.; and the holders, who occupied the lower decks of the vessel and were responsible for the inner workings of the ship. He additionally named such positions as, boatswains, gunners, carpenters, coopers, painters, tinkers, stewards, cooks and various boys as functions on the man-of-war. 18-19th century ships of the line had a complement as high as 850.

Sailing ship at sea, rolling and heeled over from the force of the wind on its sails.

Handling a sailing ship requires management of its sails to power—but not overpower—the ship and navigation to guide the ship, both at sea and in and out of harbors.

Under sail

Key elements of sailing a ship are setting the right amount of sail to generate maximum power without endangering the ship, adjusting the sails to the wind direction on the course sailed, and changing tack to bring the wind from one side of the vessel to the other.

Setting sail

A sailing ship crew manages the running rigging of each square sail. Each sail has two sheets that control its lower corners, two braces that control the angle of the yard, two clewlines, four buntlines and two reef tackles. All these lines must be manned as the sail is deployed and the yard raised. They use a halyard to raise each yard and its sail; then they pull or ease the braces to set the angle of the yard across the vessel; they pull on sheets to haul lower corners of the sail, clews, out to yard below. Under way, the crew manages reef tackles, haul leeches, reef points, to manage the size and angle of the sail; bowlines pull the leading edge of the sail (leech) taut when close hauled. When furling the sail, the crew uses clewlines, haul up the clews and buntlines to haul up the middle of sail up; when lowered, lifts support each yard.

In strong winds, the crew is directed to reduce the number of sails or, alternatively, the amount of each given sail that is presented to the wind by a process called reefing. To pull the sail up, seamen on the yardarm pull on reef tackles, attached to reef cringles, to pull the sail up and secure it with lines, called reef points. Dana spoke of the hardships of sail handling during high wind and rain or with ice covering the ship and its rigging.

Changing tack

Diagram contrasting course made good to windward by tacking a schooner versus a square-rigged ship.

Sailing vessels cannot sail directly into the wind. Instead, square-riggers must sail a course that is between 60° and 70° away from the wind direction and fore-and aft vessels can typically sail no closer than 45°. To reach a destination, sailing vessels may have to change course and allow the wind to come from the opposite side in a procedure, called tacking, when the wind comes across the bow during the maneuver.

When tacking, a square-rigged vessel's sails must be presented squarely to the wind and thus impede forward motion as they are swung around via the yardarms through the wind as controlled by the vessel's running rigging, using braces—adjusting the fore and aft angle of each yardarm around the mast—and sheets attached to the clews (bottom corners) of each sail to control the sail's angle to the wind. The procedure is to turn the vessel into the wind with the hind-most fore-and-aft sail (the spanker), pulled to windward to help turn the ship through the eye of the wind. Once the ship has come about, all the sails are adjusted to align properly with the new tack. Because square-rigger masts are more strongly braced from behind than from ahead, tacking is a dangerous procedure in strong winds; the ship may lose forward momentum (become caught in stays) and the rigging may fail from the wind coming from ahead. The ship may also lose momentum at wind speeds of less than 10 knots (19 km/h). Under these conditions, the choice may be to wear ship—to turn the ship away from the wind and around 240° onto the next tack (60° off the wind).

A fore-and-aft rig permits the wind to flow past the sail, as the craft head through the eye of the wind. Most rigs pivot around a stay or the mast, while this occurs. For a jib, the old leeward sheet is released as the craft heads through the wind and the old windward sheet is tightened as the new leeward sheet to allow the sail to draw wind. Mainsails are often self-tending and slide on a traveler to the opposite side. On certain rigs, such as lateens and luggers, the sail may be partially lowered to bring it to the opposite side.

Navigation

The marine sextant is used to measure the elevation of celestial bodies above the horizon.

Early navigational techniques employed observations of the sun, stars, waves and birdlife. In the 15th century, the Chinese were using the magnetic compass to identify direction of travel. By the 16th century in Europe, navigational instruments included the quadrant, the astrolabe, cross staff, dividers and compass. By the time of the Age of Exploration these tools were being used in combination with a log to measure speed, a lead line to measure soundings, and a lookout to identify potential hazards. Later, an accurate marine sextant became standard for determining latitude and an accurate chronometer became standard for determining longitude.

Passage planning begins with laying out a route along a chart, which comprises a series of courses between fixes—verifiable locations that confirm the actual track of the ship on the ocean. Once a course has been set, the person at the helm attempts to follow its direction with reference to the compass. The navigator notes the time and speed at each fix to estimate the arrival at the next fix, a process called dead reckoning. For coast-wise navigation, sightings from known landmarks or navigational aids may be used to establish fixes, a process called pilotage. At sea, sailing ships used celestial navigation on a daily schedule, as follows:

  1. Continuous dead reckoning plot
  2. Star observations at morning twilight for a celestial fix
  3. Morning sun observation to determine compass error by azimuth observation of the sun
  4. Noontime observation of the sun for noon latitude line for determination the day's run and day's set and drift
  5. Afternoon sun line to determine compass error by azimuth observation of the sun
  6. Star observations at evening twilight for a celestial fix

Fixes were taken with a marine sextant, which measures the distance of the celestial body above the horizon.

Entering and leaving harbor

Given the limited maneuverability of sailing ships, it could be difficult to enter and leave harbor with the presence of a tide without coordinating arrivals with a flooding tide and departures with an ebbing tide. In harbor, a sailing ship stood at anchor, unless it needed to be loaded or unloaded at a dock or pier, in which case it might be warped alongside or towed by a tug. Warping involved using a long rope (the warp) between the ship and a fixed point on the shore. This was pulled on by a capstan on shore, or on the ship. This might be a multi-stage process if the route was not simple. If no fixed point was available, a kedge anchor might be taken out in a ship's boat to a suitable point and the ship then pulled up to the kedge. Square rigged vessels could use backing and filling (of the sails) to manoeuvre in a tideway, or control could be maintained by drudging the anchor - lower the anchor until it touches the bottom so that the dragging anchor gives steerage way in the flow of the tide.: 199–202

These are examples of sailing ships; some terms have multiple meanings:

Defined by general configuration

  • Caravel: small maneuverable ship, lateen rigged
  • Carrack: three or four masted ship, square-rigged forward, lateen-rigged aft
  • Clipper: a merchant ship designed specifically for speed
  • Cog: plank-built, one-masted, square-rigged vessel
  • Dhow: a lateen-rigged merchant or fishing vessel
  • Djong: large tradeship used by ancient Indonesian and Malaysian people
  • Fluyt: a Dutch oceangoing merchant vessel, rigged similarly to a galleon
  • Galleon: a large, primarily square-rigged, armed cargo carrier of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
  • Junk: a lug-rigged Chinese ship, which included many types, models and variants.
  • Koch: small, Russian clinker-built ship, designed for use in Arctic waters
  • Longship: vessels used by the Vikings, with a single mast and square sail, also propelled by oars.
  • Pinisi: Indonesia's traditional sailing ship
  • Pink: in the Atlantic, a small oceangoing ship with a narrow stern.
  • Snow: a brig carrying a square mainsail and often a spanker on a trysail mast
  • Sailing superyacht: a large sailing yacht
  • Waʻa kaulua: Polynesian double-hulled voyaging canoe
  • Windjammer: (informal) large merchant sailing ship with an iron or steel hull

Defined by sail plan

All masts have fore-and-aft sails

  • Schooner: fore-and-aft rigged sails, with two or more masts, the aftermost mast taller or equal to the height of the forward mast(s)

All masts have square sails

  • Brig: two masts, square rigged (may have a spanker on the aftermost)
  • Full-rigged ship: three or more masts, all of them square rigged

Mixture of masts with square sails and masts with fore-and-aft sails

Military vessels

  • Corvette: lightly armed, fast sailing vessel
  • Cutter: small naval vessel, fore-and-aft rigged, single mast with two headsails
  • Frigate: a ship-rigged warship with a single gundeck
  • Ship of the line: the largest warship in European navies, ship-rigged
  • Xebec: a Mediterranean warship adapted from a galley, with three lateen-rigged masts

  1. Freight: the price paid for carrying a cargo
  2. The fineness of a ship's hull is best described by considering a rectangular cuboid with the same length, breadth (beam) and depth as the hull of the ship. The more material that you have to carve away to get the shape of the ship's hull, the finer the lines.
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Sailing ship
Sailing ship Language Watch Edit For the song see Der Kommissar album Sailing vessel redirects here For sail powered vehicles see Wind powered vehicle A sailing ship is a sea going vessel that uses sails mounted on masts to harness the power of wind and propel the vessel There is a variety of sail plans that propel sailing ships employing square rigged or fore and aft sails Some ships carry square sails on each mast the brig and full rigged ship said to be ship rigged when there are three or more masts 1 Others carry only fore and aft sails on each mast for instance some schooners Still others employ a combination of square and fore and aft sails including the barque barquentine and brigantine 2 A barque a three masted sailing ship with square sails on the first two masts fore and main and fore and aft sails on the mizzenmast Sail plansFull rigged shipBarqueBarquentineSchoonerShowing three masted examples progressing from square sails on each to all fore and aft sails on each Early sailing ships were used for river and coastal waters in Ancient Egypt and the Mediterranean Blue water sea going sailing ships were first independently invented by the Austronesian peoples with the fore and aft crab claw sail as well as the culturally unique catamaran and outrigger boat technologies These enabled the rapid Austronesian expansion into the islands of the Indo Pacific since 3000 BC from an origin in Taiwan as well as facilitated the first maritime trading network in the Indo Pacific from at least 1500 BC 3 4 Later developments in Asia produced the junk and dhow vessels that incorporated innovations absent in European ships of the time European sailing ships with predominantly square rigs became prevalent during the Age of Discovery when they crossed oceans between continents and around the world In the European Age of Sail a full rigged ship was one with a bowsprit and three masts each of which consists of a lower top and topgallant mast 5 Most sailing ships were merchantmen but the Age of Sail also saw the development of large fleets of well armed warships The Age of Sail waned with the advent of steam powered ships which did not depend upon a favourable wind Contents 1 History 1 1 Before 1700 1 1 1 Mediterranean and Baltic 1 1 2 South China Sea amp Austronesia 1 1 3 Indian Ocean 1 1 4 Global exploration 1 2 1700 to 1850 1 2 1 Warships 1 2 2 Clippers 1 2 3 Copper sheathing 1 3 After 1850 2 Features 2 1 Hull 2 2 Masts 2 3 Sails 2 4 Rigging 2 4 1 Standing rigging 2 4 2 Running rigging 3 Crew 3 1 Merchant vessel 3 2 Warship 4 Ship handling 4 1 Under sail 4 1 1 Setting sail 4 1 2 Changing tack 4 2 Navigation 4 3 Entering and leaving harbor 5 Examples 6 Gallery 7 See also 8 Notes 9 References 10 Further reading 11 External linksHistory EditFurther information Ship History Fijian voyaging outrigger boat with a crab claw sail The first sailing vessels were developed for use in the South China Sea by the Austronesian peoples and also independently in lands abutting the western Mediterranean Sea by the 2nd millennium BC In Asia early vessels were equipped with crab claw sails with a spar on the top and bottom of the sail arranged fore and aft when needed In the Mediterranean vessels were powered downwind by square sails that supplemented propulsion by oars Sailing ships evolved differently in the South China Sea and in the Indian Ocean where fore and aft sail plans were developed into several centuries AD By the time of the Age of Discovery starting in the 15th century square rigged multi masted vessels were the norm and were guided by navigation techniques that included the magnetic compass and making sightings of the sun and stars that allowed transoceanic voyages The Age of Sail reached its peak in the 18th and 19th centuries with large heavily armed battleships and merchant sailing ships Sailing and steam ships coexisted for much of the 19th century The steamers of the early part of the century had very poor fuel efficiency and were suitable only for a small number of roles such as towing sailing ships and providing short route passenger and mail services Both sailing and steam ships saw large technological improvements over the century Ultimately the two large stepwise improvements in fuel efficiency of compound and then triple expansion steam engines made the steamship by the 1880s able to compete in the vast majority of trades Commercial sail still continued into the 20th century with the last ceasing to trade by c 1960 6 106 111 7 89 Before 1700 Edit Initially sails provided supplementary power to ships with oars because the sails were not designed to sail to windward In the Austronesian Indo Pacific sailing ships were equipped with fore and aft rigs that made sailing to windward possible Later square rigged vessels too were able to sail to windward and became the standard for European ships through the Age of Discovery when vessels ventured around Africa to India to the Americas and around the world Later during this period in the late 15th century ship rigged vessels with multiple square sails on each mast appeared and became common for sailing ships 8 Mediterranean and Baltic Edit Roman warship with sails oars and a steering oar Sailing ships in the Mediterranean region date back to at least 3000 BC when Egyptians used a bipod mast to support a single square sail on a vessel that mainly relied on multiple paddlers Later the mast became a single pole and paddles were supplanted with oars Such vessels plied both the Nile and the Mediterranean coast The Minoan civilization of Crete may have been the world s first thalassocracy brought to prominence by sailing vessels dating to before 1800 BC Middle Minoan IIB 9 Between 1000 BC and 400 AD the Phoenicians Greeks and Romans developed ships that were powered by square sails sometimes with oars to supplement their capabilities Such vessels used a steering oar as a rudder to control direction Fore and aft sails started appearing on sailing vessels in the Mediterranean ca 1200 AD 8 an influence of rigs introduced in Asia and the Indian Ocean 10 Starting in the 8th century in Denmark Vikings were building clinker constructed longships propelled by a single square sail when practical and oars when necessary 11 A related craft was the knarr which plied the Baltic and North Seas using primarily sail power 12 The windward edge of the sail was stiffened with a beitass a pole that fitted into the lower corner of the sail when sailing close to the wind 13 South China Sea amp Austronesia Edit Main articles Austronesian maritime trade network Lashed lug boat Outrigger boat and Junk ship A carved stone relief panel showing a Borobudur ship from 8th century Java a typical ancient trading ship with tanja sails and outriggers used by Austronesian peoples in Maritime Southeast Asia Chinese junk Keying with a center mounted rudder post c 1848 The first sea going sailing ships in human history were developed by the Austronesian peoples from what is now Taiwan Their invention of catamarans outriggers and crab claw sails enabled the Austronesian Expansion at around 3000 to 1500 BC From Taiwan they rapidly colonized the islands of Maritime Southeast Asia then sailed further onwards to Micronesia Island Melanesia Polynesia and Madagascar Austronesian rigs were distinctive in that they had spars supporting both the upper and lower edges of the sails and sometimes in between in contrast to western rigs which only had a spar on the upper edge 3 14 15 Early Austronesian sailors also influenced the development of sailing technologies in Sri Lanka and Southern India through the Austronesian maritime trade network of the Indian Ocean the precursor to the spice trade route and the maritime silk road 4 Austronesians established the first maritime trade network with ocean going merchant ships which plied the early trade routes from Southeast Asia from at least 1500 BC They reached as far northeast as Japan and as far west as eastern Africa They colonized Madagascar and their trade routes were the precursors to the spice trade route and the maritime silk road They mainly facilitated trade of goods from China and Japan to South India Sri Lanka the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea 4 16 17 An important invention in this region was the fore and aft rig which made sailing against the wind possible Such sails may have originated at least several hundred years BC 18 Balance lugsails and tanja sails also originated from this region Vessels with such sails explored and traded along the western coast of Africa This type of sail propagated to the west and influenced Arab lateen designs 18 Large Austronesian trading ships with as many as four sails were recorded by Han Dynasty 206 BC 220 AD scholars as the kunlun bo 崑崙舶 lit ship of the Kunlun people They were booked by Chinese Buddhist pilgrims for passage to Southern India and Sri Lanka 19 Bas reliefs of Sailendran and Srivijayan large merchant ships with various configurations of tanja sails and outriggers are also found in the Borobudur temple dating back to the 8th century CE 20 21 By the 10th century AD the Song Dynasty started building the first Chinese junks which were adopted from the design of the Javanese djongs The junk rig in particular became associated with Chinese coast hugging trading ships 22 23 Junks in China were constructed from teak with pegs and nails they featured watertight compartments and acquired center mounted tillers and rudders 24 These ships became the basis for the development of Chinese warships during the Mongol Yuan Dynasty and were used in the unsuccessful Mongol invasions of Japan and Java 25 26 The Ming dynasty 1368 1644 saw the use of junks as long distance trading vessels Chinese Admiral Zheng He reportedly sailed to India Arabia and southern Africa on a trade and diplomatic mission 27 28 Literary lore suggests that his largest vessel the Treasure Ship measured 400 feet 120 m in length and 150 feet 46 m in width whereas modern research suggests that it was unlikely to have exceeded 200 feet 61 m in length 29 Indian Ocean Edit Further information Dhow History A traditional Maldivian Baghlah with a fore and aft lateen rig The Indian Ocean was the venue for increasing trade between India and Africa between 1200 and 1500 The vessels employed would be classified as dhows with lateen rigs During this interval such vessels grew in capacity from 100 to 400 tonnes Dhows were often built with teak planks from India and Southeast Asia sewn together with coconut husk fiber no nails were employed This period also saw the implementation of center mounted rudders controlled with a tiller 30 Global exploration Edit Main article Carrack Replica of Ferdinand Magellan s carrack Victoria which completed the first global circumnavigation Technological advancements that were important to the Age of Discovery in the 15th century were the adoption of the magnetic compass and advances in ship design The compass was an addition to the ancient method of navigation based on sightings of the sun and stars The compass was invented by Chinese It had been used for navigation in China by the 11th century and was adopted by the Arab traders in the Indian Ocean The compass spread to Europe by the late 12th or early 13th century 10 Use of the compass for navigation in the Indian Ocean was first mentioned in 1232 22 The Europeans used a dry compass with a needle on a pivot The compass card was also a European invention 22 At the beginning of the 15th century the carrack was the most capable European ocean going ship It was carvel built and large enough to be stable in heavy seas It was capable of carrying a large cargo and the provisions needed for very long voyages Later carracks were square rigged on the foremast and mainmast and lateen rigged on the mizzenmast They had a high rounded stern with large aftcastle forecastle and bowsprit at the stem As the predecessor of the galleon the carrack was one of the most influential ship designs in history while ships became more specialized in the following centuries the basic design remained unchanged throughout this period 31 Ships of this era were only able to sail approximately 70 into the wind and tacked from one side to the other across the wind with difficulty which made it challenging to avoid shipwrecks when near shores or shoals during storms 32 Nonetheless such vessels reached India around Africa with Vasco da Gama 33 the Americas with Christopher Columbus 34 and around the world under Ferdinand Magellan 35 1700 to 1850 Edit 1798 sea battle between a French and British man of war A late 19th century American clipper ship The five masted Preussen was the largest sailing ship ever built Schooners became favored for some coast wise commerce after 1850 they enabled a small crew to handle sails Sailing ships became longer and faster over time with ship rigged vessels carrying taller masts with more square sails Other sail plans emerged as well that had just fore and aft sails schooners or a mixture of the two brigantines barques and barquentines 8 Warships Edit Further information Warship The Age of Sail and Naval tactics in the age of sail Cannon were present in the 14th century but did not become common at sea until they could be reloaded quickly enough to be reused in the same battle The size of a ship required to carry a large number of cannon made oar based propulsion impossible and warships came to rely primarily on sails The sailing man of war emerged during the 16th century 36 By the middle of the 17th century warships were carrying increasing numbers of cannon on three decks Naval tactics evolved to bring each ship s firepower to bear in a line of battle coordinated movements of a fleet of warships to engage a line of ships in the enemy fleet 37 Carracks with a single cannon deck evolved into galleons with as many as two full cannon decks 38 which evolved into the man of war and further into the ship of the line designed for engaging the enemy in a line of battle One side of a ship was expected to shoot broadsides against an enemy ship at close range 37 In the 18th century the small and fast frigate and sloop of war too small to stand in the line of battle evolved to convoy trade scout for enemy ships and blockade enemy coasts 39 Clippers Edit Main article Clipper The term clipper started to be used in the first quarter of the 19th century It was applied to sailing vessels designed primarily for speed Only a small proportion of sailing vessels could properly have the term applied to them 7 33 Early examples were the schooners and brigantines called Baltimore clippers used for blockade running or as privateers in the War of 1812 and afterwards for smuggling opium or illegally transporting slaves Larger clippers usually ship or barque rigged and with a different hull design were built for the California trade from east coast USA ports to San Francisco after gold was discovered in 1848 the associated ship building boom lasted until 1854 40 7 9 13 14 Clippers were built for trade between the United Kingdom and China after the East India Company lost its monopoly in 1834 The primary cargo was tea and sailing ships particularly tea clippers dominated this long distance route until the development of fuel efficient steamships coincided with the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 41 9 10 209 Other clippers worked on the Australian immigrant routes or in smaller quantities in any role where a fast passage secured higher rates of freight a or passenger fares Whilst many clippers were ship rigged the definition is not limited to any rig 40 10 11 Clippers were generally built for a specific trade those in the California trade had to withstand the seas of Cape Horn whilst Tea Clippers were designed for the lighter and contrary winds of the China Sea All had fine lines b with a well streamlined hull and carried a large sail area To get the best of this a skilled and determined master was needed in command 40 16 19 Copper sheathing Edit Main article Copper sheathing During the Age of Sail ships hulls were under frequent attack by shipworm which affected the structural strength of timbers and barnacles and various marine weeds which affected ship speed 42 Since before the common era a variety of coatings had been applied to hulls to counter this effect including pitch wax tar oil sulfur and arsenic 43 In the mid 18th century copper sheathing was developed as a defense against such bottom fouling 44 After coping with problems of galvanic deterioration of metal hull fasteners sacrificial anodes were developed which were designed to corrode instead of the hull fasteners 45 The practice became widespread on naval vessels starting in the late18th century 46 and on merchant vessels starting in the early 19th century until the advent of iron and steel hulls 45 After 1850 Edit Main article Iron hulled sailing ship Iron hulled sailing ships often referred to as windjammers or tall ships 47 represented the final evolution of sailing ships at the end of the Age of Sail They were built to carry bulk cargo for long distances in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries They were the largest of merchant sailing ships with three to five masts and square sails as well as other sail plans They carried lumber guano grain or ore between continents Later examples had steel hulls Iron hulled sailing ships were mainly built from the 1870s to 1900 when steamships began to outpace them economically due to their ability to keep a schedule regardless of the wind Steel hulls also replaced iron hulls at around the same time Even into the twentieth century sailing ships could hold their own on transoceanic voyages such as Australia to Europe since they did not require bunkerage for coal nor fresh water for steam and they were faster than the early steamers which usually could barely make 8 knots 15 km h 48 The four masted iron hulled ship introduced in 1875 with the full rigged County of Peebles represented an especially efficient configuration that prolonged the competitiveness of sail against steam in the later part of the 19th century 49 The largest example of such ships was the five masted full rigged ship Preussen which had a load capacity of 7 800 tonnes 50 Ships transitioned from all sail to all steam power from the mid 19th century into the 20th 51 Five masted Preussen used steam power for driving the winches hoists and pumps and could be manned by a crew of 48 compared with four masted Kruzenshtern which has a crew of 257 52 Coastal top sail schooners with a crew as small as two managing the sail handling became an efficient way to carry bulk cargo since only the fore sails required tending while tacking and steam driven machinery was often available for raising the sails and the anchor 53 In the 20th century the DynaRig allowed central automated control of all sails in a manner that obviates the need for sending crew aloft This was developed in the 1960s in Germany as a low carbon footprint propulsion alternative for commercial ships The rig automatically sets and reefs sails its mast rotates to align the sails with the wind The sailing yachts Maltese Falcon and Black Pearl employ the rig 52 54 Features EditEvery sailing ship has a sail plan that is adapted to the purpose of the vessel and the ability of the crew each has a hull rigging and masts to hold up the sails that use the wind to power the ship the masts are supported by standing rigging and the sails are adjusted by running rigging Hull Edit Hull form lines lengthwise and in cross section from a 1781 plan Hull shapes for sailing ships evolved from being relatively short and blunt to being longer and finer at the bow 8 By the nineteenth century ships were built with reference to a half model made from wooden layers that were pinned together Each layer could be scaled to the actual size of the vessel in order to lay out its hull structure starting with the keel and leading to the ship s ribs The ribs were pieced together from curved elements called futtocks and tied in place until the installation of the planking Typically planking was caulked with a tar impregnated yarn made from manila or hemp to make the planking watertight 55 Starting in the mid 19th century iron was used first for the hull structure and later for its watertight sheathing 56 Masts Edit Diagram of rigging on a square rigged ship 57 Until the mid 19th century all vessels masts were made of wood formed from a single or several pieces of timber which typically consisted of the trunk of a conifer tree From the 16th century vessels were often built of a size requiring masts taller and thicker than could be made from single tree trunks On these larger vessels to achieve the required height the masts were built from up to four sections also called masts known in order of rising height above the decks as the lower top topgallant and royal masts 58 Giving the lower sections sufficient thickness necessitated building them up from separate pieces of wood Such a section was known as a made mast as opposed to sections formed from single pieces of timber which were known as pole masts 59 Starting in the second half of the 19th century masts were made of iron or steel 8 For ships with square sails the principal masts given their standard names in bow to stern front to back order are Fore mast the mast nearest the bow or the mast forward of the main mast with sections fore mast lower fore topmast and fore topgallant mast 58 Main mast the tallest mast usually located near the center of the ship with sections main mast lower main topmast main topgallant mast royal mast sometimes 58 Mizzen mast the aft most mast Typically shorter than the fore mast with sections mizzen mast lower mizzen topmast and mizzen topgallant mast 60 Sails Edit Main article Sail Different sail types 61 Each rig is configured in a sail plan appropriate to the size of the sailing craft Both square rigged and fore and aft rigged vessels have been built with a wide range of configurations for single and multiple masts 62 Types of sail that can be part of a sail plan can be broadly classed by how they are attached to the sailing craft To a stay Sails attached to stays include jibs which are attached to forestays and staysails which are mounted on other stays typically wire cable that support other masts from the bow aft To a mast Fore and aft sails directly attached to the mast at the luff include gaff rigged quadrilateral and Bermuda triangular sails To a spar Sails attached to a spar include both square sails and such fore and aft quadrilateral sails as lug rigs junk and spritsails and such triangular sails as the lateen and the crab claw Rigging Edit Square sail edges and corners top Running rigging bottom Sailing ships have standing rigging to support the masts and running rigging to raise the sails and control their ability to draw power from the wind The running rigging has three main roles to support the sail structure to shape the sail and to adjust its angle to the wind Square rigged vessels require more controlling lines than fore and aft rigged ones Standing rigging Edit Sailing ships prior to the mid 19th century used wood masts with hemp fiber standing rigging As rigs became taller by the end of the 19th century masts relied more heavily on successive spars stepped one atop the other to form the whole from bottom to top the lower mast top mast and topgallant mast This construction relied heavily on support by a complex array of stays and shrouds Each stay in either the fore and aft or athwartships direction had a corresponding one in the opposite direction providing counter tension Fore and aft the system of tensioning started with the stays that were anchored in front each mast Shrouds were tensioned by pairs deadeyes circular blocks that had the large diameter line run around them whilst multiple holes allowed smaller line lanyard to pass multiple times between the two and thereby allow tensioning of the shroud After the mid 19th century square rigged vessels were equipped with iron wire standing rigging which was superseded with steel wire in the late 19th century 63 41 46 Running rigging Edit Halyards used to raise and lower the yards are the primary supporting lines 64 In addition square rigs have lines that lift the sail or the yard from which it is suspended that include brails buntlines lifts and leechlines Bowlines and clew lines shape a square sail 57 To adjust the angle of the sail to wind braces are used to adjust the fore and aft angle of a yard of a square sail while sheets attach to the clews bottom corners of a sail to control the sail s angle to the wind Sheets run aft whereas tacks are used to haul the clew of a square sail forward 57 Crew Edit Seamen aloft shortening sail The crew of a sailing ship is divided between officers the captain and his subordinates and seamen or ordinary hands An able seaman was expected to hand reef and steer handle the lines and other equipment reef the sails and steer the vessel 65 The crew is organized to stand watch the oversight of the ship for a period typically four hours each 66 Richard Henry Dana Jr and Herman Melville each had personal experience aboard sailing vessels of the 19th century Merchant vessel Edit Dana described the crew of the merchant brig Pilgrim as comprising six to eight common sailors four specialist crew members the steward cook carpenter and sailmaker and three officers the captain the first mate and the second mate He contrasted the American crew complement with that of other nations on whose similarly sized ships the crew might number as many as 30 67 Larger merchant vessels had larger crews 68 Warship Edit Melville described the crew complement of the frigate warship United States as about 500 including officers enlisted personnel and 50 Marines The crew was divided into the starboard and larboard watches It was also divided into three tops bands of crew responsible for setting sails on the three masts a band of sheet anchor men whose station was forward and whose job was to tend the fore yard anchors and forward sails the after guard who were stationed aft and tended the mainsail spanker and man the various sheets controlling the position of the sails the waisters who were stationed midships and had menial duties attending the livestock etc and the holders who occupied the lower decks of the vessel and were responsible for the inner workings of the ship He additionally named such positions as boatswains gunners carpenters coopers painters tinkers stewards cooks and various boys as functions on the man of war 69 18 19th century ships of the line had a complement as high as 850 70 Ship handling Edit Sailing ship at sea rolling and heeled over from the force of the wind on its sails Handling a sailing ship requires management of its sails to power but not overpower the ship and navigation to guide the ship both at sea and in and out of harbors Under sail Edit Key elements of sailing a ship are setting the right amount of sail to generate maximum power without endangering the ship adjusting the sails to the wind direction on the course sailed and changing tack to bring the wind from one side of the vessel to the other Setting sail Edit A sailing ship crew manages the running rigging of each square sail Each sail has two sheets that control its lower corners two braces that control the angle of the yard two clewlines four buntlines and two reef tackles All these lines must be manned as the sail is deployed and the yard raised They use a halyard to raise each yard and its sail then they pull or ease the braces to set the angle of the yard across the vessel they pull on sheets to haul lower corners of the sail clews out to yard below Under way the crew manages reef tackles haul leeches reef points to manage the size and angle of the sail bowlines pull the leading edge of the sail leech taut when close hauled When furling the sail the crew uses clewlines haul up the clews and buntlines to haul up the middle of sail up when lowered lifts support each yard 71 In strong winds the crew is directed to reduce the number of sails or alternatively the amount of each given sail that is presented to the wind by a process called reefing To pull the sail up seamen on the yardarm pull on reef tackles attached to reef cringles to pull the sail up and secure it with lines called reef points 72 Dana spoke of the hardships of sail handling during high wind and rain or with ice covering the ship and its rigging 67 Changing tack Edit Diagram contrasting course made good to windward by tacking a schooner versus a square rigged ship Sailing vessels cannot sail directly into the wind Instead square riggers must sail a course that is between 60 and 70 away from the wind direction 73 and fore and aft vessels can typically sail no closer than 45 74 To reach a destination sailing vessels may have to change course and allow the wind to come from the opposite side in a procedure called tacking when the wind comes across the bow during the maneuver When tacking a square rigged vessel s sails must be presented squarely to the wind and thus impede forward motion as they are swung around via the yardarms through the wind as controlled by the vessel s running rigging using braces adjusting the fore and aft angle of each yardarm around the mast and sheets attached to the clews bottom corners of each sail to control the sail s angle to the wind 57 The procedure is to turn the vessel into the wind with the hind most fore and aft sail the spanker pulled to windward to help turn the ship through the eye of the wind Once the ship has come about all the sails are adjusted to align properly with the new tack Because square rigger masts are more strongly braced from behind than from ahead tacking is a dangerous procedure in strong winds the ship may lose forward momentum become caught in stays and the rigging may fail from the wind coming from ahead The ship may also lose momentum at wind speeds of less than 10 knots 19 km h 73 Under these conditions the choice may be to wear ship to turn the ship away from the wind and around 240 onto the next tack 60 off the wind 75 76 A fore and aft rig permits the wind to flow past the sail as the craft head through the eye of the wind Most rigs pivot around a stay or the mast while this occurs For a jib the old leeward sheet is released as the craft heads through the wind and the old windward sheet is tightened as the new leeward sheet to allow the sail to draw wind Mainsails are often self tending and slide on a traveler to the opposite side 77 On certain rigs such as lateens 78 and luggers 79 the sail may be partially lowered to bring it to the opposite side Navigation Edit The marine sextant is used to measure the elevation of celestial bodies above the horizon Early navigational techniques employed observations of the sun stars waves and birdlife In the 15th century the Chinese were using the magnetic compass to identify direction of travel By the 16th century in Europe navigational instruments included the quadrant the astrolabe cross staff dividers and compass By the time of the Age of Exploration these tools were being used in combination with a log to measure speed a lead line to measure soundings and a lookout to identify potential hazards Later an accurate marine sextant became standard for determining latitude and an accurate chronometer became standard for determining longitude 80 81 Passage planning begins with laying out a route along a chart which comprises a series of courses between fixes verifiable locations that confirm the actual track of the ship on the ocean Once a course has been set the person at the helm attempts to follow its direction with reference to the compass The navigator notes the time and speed at each fix to estimate the arrival at the next fix a process called dead reckoning For coast wise navigation sightings from known landmarks or navigational aids may be used to establish fixes a process called pilotage 1 At sea sailing ships used celestial navigation on a daily schedule as follows 82 Continuous dead reckoning plot Star observations at morning twilight for a celestial fix Morning sun observation to determine compass error by azimuth observation of the sun Noontime observation of the sun for noon latitude line for determination the day s run and day s set and drift Afternoon sun line to determine compass error by azimuth observation of the sun Star observations at evening twilight for a celestial fix Fixes were taken with a marine sextant which measures the distance of the celestial body above the horizon 80 Entering and leaving harbor Edit Given the limited maneuverability of sailing ships it could be difficult to enter and leave harbor with the presence of a tide without coordinating arrivals with a flooding tide and departures with an ebbing tide In harbor a sailing ship stood at anchor unless it needed to be loaded or unloaded at a dock or pier in which case it might be warped alongside or towed by a tug Warping involved using a long rope the warp between the ship and a fixed point on the shore This was pulled on by a capstan on shore or on the ship This might be a multi stage process if the route was not simple If no fixed point was available a kedge anchor might be taken out in a ship s boat to a suitable point and the ship then pulled up to the kedge Square rigged vessels could use backing and filling of the sails to manoeuvre in a tideway or control could be maintained by drudging the anchor lower the anchor until it touches the bottom so that the dragging anchor gives steerage way in the flow of the tide 83 84 199 202 Examples EditFurther information Sail plan Types of sailing vessels These are examples of sailing ships some terms have multiple meanings Defined by general configuration Caravel small maneuverable ship lateen rigged Carrack three or four masted ship square rigged forward lateen rigged aft Clipper a merchant ship designed specifically for speed Cog plank built one masted square rigged vessel Dhow a lateen rigged merchant or fishing vessel Djong large tradeship used by ancient Indonesian and Malaysian people Fluyt a Dutch oceangoing merchant vessel rigged similarly to a galleon Galleon a large primarily square rigged armed cargo carrier of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries Junk a lug rigged Chinese ship which included many types models and variants Koch small Russian clinker built ship designed for use in Arctic waters Longship vessels used by the Vikings with a single mast and square sail also propelled by oars Pinisi Indonesia s traditional sailing ship Pink in the Atlantic a small oceangoing ship with a narrow stern Snow a brig carrying a square mainsail and often a spanker on a trysail mast Sailing superyacht a large sailing yacht Waʻa kaulua Polynesian double hulled voyaging canoe Windjammer informal large merchant sailing ship with an iron or steel hull Defined by sail plan All masts have fore and aft sails Schooner fore and aft rigged sails with two or more masts the aftermost mast taller or equal to the height of the forward mast s All masts have square sails Brig two masts square rigged may have a spanker on the aftermost Full rigged ship three or more masts all of them square rigged Mixture of masts with square sails and masts with fore and aft sails Barque or bark at least three masts fore and aft rigged mizzen mast Barquentine at least three masts with all but the foremost fore and aft rigged Bilander a ship or brig with a lug rigged mizzen sail Brigantine two masts with the foremast square rigged Hermaphrodite brig a brigantine Military vessels Corvette lightly armed fast sailing vessel Cutter small naval vessel fore and aft rigged single mast with two headsails Frigate a ship rigged warship with a single gundeck Ship of the line the largest warship in European navies ship rigged Xebec a Mediterranean warship adapted from a galley with three lateen rigged mastsGallery Edit Gotheborg a sailing replica of a Swedish East Indiaman Cutty Sark the only surviving clipper ship 85 USS Constitution with sails on display in 2012 the oldest commissioned warship still afloat 86 French steam powered screw propelled battleship Napoleon INS Tarangini a three masted barque in service with the Indian Navy Maltese Falcon with all rotating stayless DynaRigSee also Edit Transport portal List of large sailing vessels Sailboat Sailing ship accidents Sailing ship effect describing the transition between an old and new technology Sailing ship tactics Shipbuilding Tall shipNotes Edit Freight the price paid for carrying a cargo The fineness of a ship s hull is best described by considering a rectangular cuboid with the same length breadth beam and depth as the hull of the ship The more material that you have to carve away to get the shape of the ship s hull the finer the lines References Edit a b Quiller Couch Arthur Thomas 1895 The Story of the Sea 1 Cassell and Company p 760 Parker Dana T Square Riggers in the United States and Canada pp 6 7 Transportation Trails Polo IL 1994 ISBN 0 933449 19 4 a b Meacham Steve 11 December 2008 Austronesians were first to sail the seas The Sydney Morning Herald Retrieved 28 April 2019 a b c Bellina Berenice 2014 Southeast Asia and the Early Maritime Silk Road In Guy John ed Lost Kingdoms of Early Southeast Asia Hindu Buddhist Sculpture 5th to 8th century Yale University Press pp 22 25 ISBN 9781588395245 ship Oxford English Dictionary Online ed Oxford University Press Subscription or participating institution membership required Griffiths Denis 1993 Chapter 5 Triple Expansion and the First Shipping Revolution In Gardiner Robert Greenhill Dr Basil eds The Advent of Steam The Merchant Steamship before 1900 Conway Maritime Press Ltd pp 106 126 ISBN 0 85177 563 2 a b Gardiner Robert J Greenhill Basil 1993 Sail s Last Century the Merchant Sailing Ship 1830 1930 London Conway Maritime Press ISBN 0 85177 565 9 a b c d e Anderson Romola Anderson R C 2003 09 01 A Short History of the Sailing Ship Courier Corporation ISBN 9780486429885 Bonn Muller Eti First Minoan Shipwreck Archaeology Magazine Archaeological Institute of America Retrieved 31 August 2021 a b Merson John 1990 The Genius That Was China East and West in the Making of the Modern World Woodstock NY The Overlook Press ISBN 978 0 87951 397 9 Magnusson Magnus 2016 10 06 The Vikings Stroud England p 90 ISBN 978 0750980777 OCLC 972948057 Friedman John Block Figg Kristen Mossler 2017 07 05 Routledge Revivals Trade Travel and Exploration in the Middle Ages 2000 An Encyclopedia Taylor amp Francis p 322 ISBN 9781351661324 Norman Vesey 2010 The Medieval Soldier Pen and Sword ISBN 9781783031368 Doran Edwin Jr 1974 Outrigger Ages The Journal of the Polynesian Society 83 2 130 140 Mahdi Waruno 1999 The Dispersal of Austronesian boat forms in the Indian Ocean In Blench Roger Spriggs Matthew eds Archaeology and Language III Artefacts languages and texts One World Archaeology 34 Routledge pp 144 179 ISBN 978 0415100540 Manguin Pierre Yves 2016 Austronesian Shipping in the Indian Ocean From Outrigger Boats to Trading Ships In Campbell Gwyn ed Early Exchange between Africa and the Wider Indian Ocean World Palgrave Macmillan pp 51 76 ISBN 9783319338224 Doran Edwin B 1981 Wangka Austronesian Canoe Origins Texas A amp M University Press ISBN 9780890961070 a b Shaffer Lynda Norene 1996 Maritime Southeast Asia to 1500 M E Sharpe Quoting Johnstone 1980 191 192 Kang Heejung 2015 Kunlun and Kunlun Slaves as Buddhists in the Eyes of the Tang Chinese PDF Kemanusiaan 22 1 27 52 Grice Elizabeth 17 March 2004 A strange kind of dream come true The Telegraph Retrieved 3 November 2015 Haddon A C 1920 The Outriggers of Indonesian Canoes London Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland a b c Paine Lincoln 2013 The Sea and Civilization A Maritime History of the World New York Random House LLC Worcester G R G 1971 The Junks and Sampans of the Yangtze Naval Institute Press ISBN 0870213350 Hall Kenneth R 2010 12 28 A History of Early Southeast Asia Maritime Trade and Societal Development 100 1500 Rowman amp Littlefield Publishers p 216 ISBN 9780742567627 Worcester G R G 1971 The Junks and Sampans of the Yangtze Naval Institute Press ISBN 0870213350 Nugroho Irawan Djoko 2011 Majapahit Peradaban Maritim Jakarta Suluh Nuswantara Bakti ISBN 978 602 9346 00 8 Wade Geoff 2005 The Zheng He Voyages A Reassessment Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society 78 1 288 37 58 JSTOR 41493537 Gao Sally A Brief History Of The Chinese Junk Culture Trip Retrieved 2019 06 02 Church Sally K 2005 Zheng He an investigation into the plausibility of 450 ft treasure ships Monumenta Serica 53 1 43 doi 10 1179 mon 2005 53 1 001 JSTOR 40727457 S2CID 161434221 Bulliet Richard W Crossley Pamela Kyle Headrick Daniel R Hirsch Steven Johnson Lyman 2008 The Earth and Its Peoples A Global History Brief Edition Volume I To 1550 A Global History Cengage Learning pp 352 3 ISBN 9780618992386 Konstam A 2002 The History of Shipwrecks New York Lyons Press pp 77 79 ISBN 1 58574 620 7 Block Leo 2003 To Harness the Wind A Short History of the Development of Sails Naval Institute Press ISBN 9781557502094 Diffie Bailey W Winius George D 1977 Foundations of the Portuguese Empire 1415 1850 Europe and the World in the Age of Expansion 1 p 177 ISBN 978 0 8166 0850 8 Murphy Patrick J Coye Ray W 2013 Mutiny and Its Bounty Leadership Lessons from the Age of Discovery Yale University Press ISBN 978 0 300 17028 3 Retrieved 2019 06 23 Bergreen Laurence 2003 Over the edge of the world Magellan s terrifying circumnavigation of the globe 1st ed New York Morrow ISBN 0066211735 OCLC 52047431 Kingston William H G 2014 12 29 How Britannia came to Rule the Waves BoD Books on Demand pp 123 82 ISBN 9783845711935 a b Lavery Brian 2012 Nelson s Navy The Ships Men and Organisation 1793 1815 Conway ISBN 9781844861750 Gould Richard A 2011 04 29 Archaeology and the Social History of Ships Cambridge University Press p 216 ISBN 9781139498166 Winfield Rif Roberts Stephen S 2017 French Warships in the Age of Sail 1626 1786 Pen amp Sword Books Limited ISBN 9781473893535 a b c MacGregor David R 1993 British and American Clippers A Comparison of their Design Construction and Performance London Conway Maritime Press Limited ISBN 0 85177 588 8 a b MacGregor David R 1983 The Tea Clippers Their History and Development 1833 1875 Conway Maritime Press Limited ISBN 0 85177 256 0 McKee A in Bass ed 1972 p 235 Telegdi J Trif L Romanski L 2016 Montemor Maria Fatima ed Smart anti biofouling composite coatings for naval applications Smart composite coatings and membranes transport structural environmental and energy applications Cambridge UK Elsevier pp 130 1 ISBN 9781782422952 OCLC 928714218 Hay May 15 1863 On copper and other sheathing The Engineer London Office for Publication and Advertisements p 276 a b Mccarthy Michael 2005 Ships Fastenings From Sewn Boat to Steamship Texas A amp M University Press p 131 ISBN 9781603446211 Knight R J B The introduction of copper sheathing into the Royal Navy 1779 1786 PDF rogerknight org Retrieved 28 December 2017 Schauffelen Otmar 2005 Chapman Great Sailing Ships of the World Hearst Books ISBN 9781588163844 Randier Jean 1968 Men and Ships Around Cape Horn 1616 1939 Barker p 338 ISBN 9780213764760 Cumming Bill 2009 Gone a chronicle of the seafarers amp fabulous clipper ships of R amp J Craig of Glasgow Craig s Counties Glasgow Brown Son amp Ferguson ISBN 9781849270137 OCLC 491200437 Sutherland Jonathan Canwell Diane 2007 07 07 Container Ships and Oil Tankers Gareth Stevens ISBN 9780836883770 Schauffelen Otmar 2005 Chapman Great Sailing Ships of the World Hearst Books ISBN 9781588163844 a b Staff April 13 2009 Sailing at the touch of a button Low Tech Magazine Retrieved 2019 06 20 Chatterton Edward Keble 1915 Sailing Ships and Their Story the Story of Their Development from the Earliest Times to the Present Day Lippincott pp 298 Black Pearl www boatinternational com Boat International Media Ltd Retrieved 11 October 2018 Staff 2012 Designing and Building a Wooden Ship Penobscot Marine Museum Retrieved 2019 06 22 Clark Arthur Hamilton 1912 The Clipper Ship Era An Epitome of Famous American and British Clipper Ships Their Owners Builders Commanders and Crews 1843 1869 G P Putnam s Sons a b c d Biddlecombe George 1990 The Art of Rigging Containing an Explanation of Terms and Phrases and the Progressive Method of Rigging Expressly Adapted for Sailing Ships Dover Maritime Series Courier Corporation p 13 ISBN 9780486263434 a b c Keegan John 1989 The Price of Admiralty New York Viking pp 278 ISBN 0 670 81416 4 Fincham John 1843 A Treatise on Masting Ships and Mast Making Explaining Their Principles and Practical Operations the Mode of Forming and Combining Made masts Etc London Whittaker pp 216 30 Harland John Seamanship in the Age of Sail pp 15 19 22 36 37 Naval Institute Press Annapolis Maryland 1992 ISBN 0 87021 955 3 Clerc Rampal G 1913 Mer la Mer Dans la Nature la Mer et l Homme Paris Librairie Larousse p 213 Folkard Henry Coleman 2012 Sailing Boats from Around the World The Classic 1906 Treatise Dover Maritime Courier Corporation p 576 ISBN 9780486311340 zu Mondfeld Wolfram 2005 Historic Ship Models Sterling Publishing Company Inc p 352 ISBN 9781402721861 Howard Jim Doane Charles J 2000 Handbook of Offshore Cruising The Dream and Reality of Modern Ocean Cruising Sheridan House Inc p 468 ISBN 9781574090932 Editors Seamanship Oxford Reference www oxfordreference com p Seamanship Retrieved 2019 06 24 CS1 maint extra text authors list link Tony Gray Workshop Hints Ship s Bells The British Horological Institute Archived from the original on 9 November 2012 Retrieved 12 June 2011 a b Dana Richard Henry 1895 Two Years Before the Mast A Personal Narrative Houghton Mifflin pp 11 13 Armstrong John 2017 12 01 The Vital Spark The British Coastal Trade 1700 1930 Oxford University Press ISBN 9781786948960 Melville Herman 1850 White jacket Or The World in the Man of war Harper pp 14 8 Lavery Brian 1983 The ship of the line London Conway Maritime Press ISBN 0851772528 OCLC 10361880 Queeney Tim April 25 2014 Square sail handling Ocean Navigator May June 2014 www oceannavigator com Retrieved 2019 06 23 Mayne Richard 2000 The Language of Sailing New York Routledge pp reef ISBN 9781135965655 a b Editor January 1 2003 Tall ship sail handling Ocean Navigator January February 2003 www oceannavigator com Retrieved 2019 06 23 CS1 maint extra text authors list link Royce Patrick M 1997 Royce s Sailing Illustrated ProStar Publications ISBN 9780911284072 Findlay Gordon D 2005 My Hand on the Tiller AuthorHouse p 138 ISBN 9781456793500 Goodwin Peter 2018 01 25 HMS Victory Pocket Manual 1805 Admiral Nelson s Flagship At Trafalgar Bloomsbury Publishing ISBN 9781472834072 Jobson Gary 2008 Sailing Fundamentals Revised ed Simon and Schuster p 224 ISBN 978 1 4391 3678 2 Campbell I C 1995 The Lateen Sail in World History PDF Journal of World History 6 1 pp 1 23 archived from the original PDF on 2016 08 04 retrieved 2017 06 16 Skeat Walter W 2013 An Etymological Dictionary of the English Language Dover language guides Reprint ed Courier Corporation p 351 ISBN 978 0 486 31765 6 a b Johnston Andrew K Connor Roger D Stephens Carlene E Ceruzzi Paul E 2015 06 02 Time and Navigation The Untold Story of Getting from Here to There Smithsonian Institution ISBN 9781588344922 Chisholm Hugh ed 1911 Sextant Encyclopaedia Britannica 24 11th ed Cambridge University Press pp 765 767 Turpin Edward A MacEwen William A Hayler William B 1965 Merchant Marine officers handbook Cambridge Md Cornell Maritime Press ISBN 087033056X OCLC 228950964 Whidden John D 1912 Ocean Life in the Old Sailing Ship Days From Forecastle to Quarter deck Little Brown amp Co Harland John 1984 Seamanship in the Age of Sail an account of the shiphandling of the sailing man of war 1600 1860 based on contemporary sources London Conway Maritime Press ISBN 978 1 8448 6309 9 Cutty Sark Royal Museums Greenwich Website Retrieved July 29 2014 Parker Dana T Square Riggers in the United States and Canada p 12 Transportation Trails Polo IL 1994 ISBN 0 933449 19 4 Further reading EditGraham Gerald S The Ascendancy of the Sailing Ship 1850 85 Economic History Review 9 1 1956 pp 74 88 online Watts Philip 1911 Ship In Chisholm Hugh ed Encyclopaedia Britannica 24 11th ed Cambridge University Press pp 880 970 see pages 881 to 887 I History to the Invention of SteamshipsExternal links EditLook up sailing ship in Wiktionary the free dictionary Media related to Sailing ships at Wikimedia Commons Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Sailing ship amp oldid 1052853905, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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