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Sunday, October 01, 2006

When I saw that the Admiralty of Zeeland had two ships, one with 18 guns and another with 20 guns in 1652, I thought it must be a mistake

My reaction to seeing the list derived from the 1652 Hollandsche Mercurius that showed Lambert Bartelszoon's ship carrying 18 guns and having a crew of 100 men and Johannes Michielszoon's ship with 20 guns and a crew of 100 men, I thought it must be a mistake. The figures were repeated in Hendrick de Raedt's pamphlet, so I started to take them more seriously. Now that I have Witte de With's journals, I know that the figures are correct. The May 1653 list from Witte de With's letters (E8811) oddly enough lists these ships as Zeeland Directors' ships. As Johannes Michielszoon had been killed in the Three Days Battle (Portland), there was a different captain (Jan Hoesen). At this date, the two ships had 90 men crews. I have speculated that Lambert Bartelszoon's ship was the Japonder, which had been purchased in 1652 with 12 guns on board. By 1653, the Japonder was renamed Dordrecht. Ron van Maanen says that by March1653, the Dordrecht had a crew of 70 sailors and 20 soldiers, and carried 4-12pdr, 7-6pdr, and 6-3pdr. The length of the jacht Dordrecht was probably 100 ft, despite the Staet van Oorlog te Water for the year 1654, which gave the figure as 85ft. Sources:
  1. Pieter Casteleyn, Hollandsche Mercurius, 1652
  2. Ron van Maanen, unpublished manuscript "Dutch Warships 1600-1800", undated, but circa 1992
  3. Hendrik de Raedt, Lyste van de schepen van Oorloge onder het beleyt Admirael Marten Harpersz. Tromp, 1652
  4. Staet van Oorlog te Water for the year 1654, 1654
  5. Witte de With, letters from 1653 to 1658, Archive E8811 from the Riksarkivet, Stockholm

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