Thursday, June 19, 2008

Golden Hind

This is Brixham harbour in South Devon, England. Brixham is a pretty fishing village that in Victorian times was a busy deep sea fishing port. the old fisherman's cottages are painted pastel colours and surround the harbour.

The harbour is still filled with fishing boats, and a very beautiful replica of Sir Francis Drake's galleon, the Golden Hind. [There is another full size replica of the Golden Hind berthed in St Mary Overie Dock, London]

A view from the other side of the ship shows the gun ports for cannon and some of the different deck areas, the coat of arms and Tudor style decoration.

The original Golden Hind was part of a flotilla of 5 ships which sailed off partly in exploration and partly in semi-legal piracy against Spanish ships, possessions and allies.

She was the only ship of the five to return three years later, after circumnavigating the world.

When the galleon set sail from Plymouth in 1577, she was named the Pelican - its not clear why the name was changed to the Golden Hind during the voyage.

The crow's nest is the lookout post on the top of the main mast. Its a kind of platform surrounded by a railing - and look-out was not the best job for someone with vertigo.

The Golden Hind figurehead [a hind is a female deer]. I wonder what the original Pelican figurehead looked like.
The ships tender which would have been used to row from the ship to shore when the ship at anchor and not safely moored in a harbour.
Queen Elizabeth the First was delighted with her share of the booty collected by Francis Drake's privateering . She dined on board the Golden Hind and knighted him Sir Francis Drake -though the actual knighthood ceremony was conducted by the French Ambassador for diplomatic reasons.

Queen Elizabeth might have given the original privateering charter to Drake to allow him to attack and rob Spanish ships but it would have been poor form to be seen as completely condoning and honouring in the culprit.

1 comment:

Magpie Magic said...

What a beautiful ship - I love sailing boats! And great photos as per usual. :-)