Figure-Heads and Beak-Heads of the Ships of Henry VIII

By H S Vaughan, published February 1914


The article takes up a subject touched on in previous articles and correspondence in the Mariner’s Mirror relating to the bows of 16th century warships. From contemporary drawings is observed that both galleases (sail and oar driven) and ships (sail only) had a ram-shaped beak-head but not, on English-built ships, a decorative figure-head. The author discusses the purposes of this feature and the reasons for its emergence in the 16th century and disappearance in the 17th.

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Filed under: Tudors | Other (location)
Subjects include: Navies | Ship Models & Figureheads | Shipbuilding & Design

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