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PHARAOH NECHO ships 600 B.C.

Somewhere between the years 610 and 594 B.C. some Phœnician ships, acting under instructions from Pharaoh Necho, who reigned from 612-596 BC, are said to have circumnavigated Africa, having proceeded from the Indian to the Southern Ocean, and thence round by the Atlantic and through the Pillars of Hercules home. The voyage occupied more than two years, a circumstance which was due to the fact that they always landed in the autumn and sowed a tract of country with corn, and waited on shore till it was fit to cut. In the time of Solomon the joint fleets of the Israelites and Phœnicians made voyages from the head of the Red Sea down the coasts of Arabia and Eastern Africa, and even to Persia and Beluchistan, and probably also to India. The Phœnicians were not only great traders themselves, but they manned the fleets of other nations, and built ships for other peoples, notably for the Egyptians and Persians. It is unfortunate that we have so few representations of the Phœnician ships, but we are justified in concluding that they were of the same general type as those which were used by the Greeks, the Carthaginians, and eventually by the Romans. The representations of their vessels known to be in existence were found by the late Sir Austin Layard in the palace built by King Sennacherib at Kouyunjik, near Nineveh, about 700 B.C. Though they were obviously rather symbols of ships than faithful representations, we can, nevertheless, gather from them that the warship was a galley provided with a ram, and fitted with a mast carrying a single square sail; there were also two banks of oars on each side. The steering was accomplished by two large oars at the stern, and the fighting troops were carried on a deck or platform raised on pillars above the heads of the rowers.

The vessel depict on the stamp is an Egyptian vessel from around 1600 BC and not one from around 600 BC see: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=14305&p=16144&hilit=ancient+Egyptian+ship#p16144
Source: ... tm#Page_27
Uganda 1989 150s sg 765, scott722

Hermes, Gypsey Schooner and Belle Poule.

HMS HERMES was a 20-gun class sixth-rate post ship built in Milford Dockyard in 1811. On 11 February 1812 Hermes captured the American brig Flora. Then on 26 April Hermes captured the American brig Tigress. Four days later, HERMES and BELLE POULE captured the American privateer schooner GIPSY (or Gipsey). She was on her way from New York City to Bordeaux with a cargo worth ₤50,000 when the British vessels captured her in the mid-Atlantic after a three-day chase. Gipsey surrendered twice to Hermes and twice got away again before Belle Poule caught her. Gipsey was of 300 tons (bm) and was armed with twelve 18-pounder carronades and an 18-pounder gun on a pivot mount.In September 1814, master Percy led her in an unsuccessful attack on Fort Bowyer. The Louisiana State Museum has a map of the battle. The attack took place on 15 September at about 4:30pm. Two of the four British vessels could not get close enough to fire. The fort was more strongly armed than expected, the British fire was ineffective, and a parallel ground attack failed. Furthermore, as she tried to withdraw, Hermes grounded under the guns of the fort. Percy evacuated her crew on boats from Sophie and then set fire to Hermes, which blew up after the fire reached her magazine at around 10pm. In all, Hermes had lost 17 killed in action, 5 mortally wounded and 19 wounded. (The medical journal of the Hermes has survived. ) She was destroyed in 1814 to prevent her falling into American hands after grounding during her unsuccessful attack on Fort Bowyer on Mobile Pointoutside Mobile, Alabama. On 18 January 1815, Percy faced a court martial on board Cydnus, off Cat Island (Mississippi). The court acquitted him of all blame, finding that the circumstances justified the attack and that all involved had behaved with great gallantry. HMS BELLE POULE was a Royal Navy fifth rate frigate, formerly Belle Poule, a Virginie-class frigate of the French Navy, which was built by the Crucy family's shipyard at Basse-Indre to a design by Jacques-Noël Sané. She was launched on 17 April 1802, and saw active service in the East, but in 1806 a British squadron under Sir John Borlase Warren captured her off La Palma in the Canary Islands. The Admiralty commissioned her into the Royal Navy as HMS Belle Poule. At the time of her capture Belle Poule was armed with forty 18-pounder guns, had a crew of 320 men, and was under the command of Captain Brouillac. Marengo and Belle Poule had lost 65 men killed and 80 wounded. The British on London and Amazon had 13 officers and men killed and 26 officers and men wounded. Belle Poule returned to Portsmouth on 17 May 1815. A week later she sailed for Cork. She was converted to a prison hulk in 1815. She was sold on 11 June 1816 for ₤2,700. The design stamp is made after painting of John Bentham Dinsdale: “Hermes, Gypsey Schooner and Belle Poule”.
Somali 2017;


The sixth issue from Maritime Malta series consists of 3 stamps featuring vessels dating back to the Order of Saint John.

For many years, warships, such as the galley, were used by the Mediterranean naval powers. In fact this type of ship served for many years as the backbone of the Navy of the Order of Saint John. The Galley was characterised by its long, slender and shallow hull. These vessels were usually painted red with a white waterline and while most vessels at the time had sails, however the primary method of propulsion was the human strength of prisoners.

The 26c stamp depicts a model of the common galley, also known as Sensile. This was armed with five bronze cannon on the bow and propelled by 26 oars on each side. Three to five people were needed for each oar and this vessel was also rigged with two lateen sails. This model is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum.

The 42c Stamp depicts a model known as the Demi Galley or the Half Galley. This was introduced in 1742 and was a smaller version of the common galley. The development of this galley came at the time when availability of prisoners as oarsmen was scarce hence the smaller number of rowers needed. This galley was equipped with one large calibre bronze cannon on the bow. This model is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum and it is considered as the only surviving Demi Galley model known.

The 1 stamp shows a model of a brigantine. This was the ceremonial barge of the Portuguese Grand Master Antonio Manoel de Vilhena and was painted green with a white waterline. It was fitted with nine oars on each side and was not designed for long voyages, with storage space kept at a minimum. It is documented that Grand Master de Vilhena travelled to Gozo in this vessel. This model underwent extensive restoration in 1964 and it is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum.

Source: Joseph Abela (Heritage Malta) ... sues%2fphi
Malta 2018 0.26/1.00 Euro sg?, scott? (The 1.00 Euro has the year 2019 printed on it)


Antigua & Barbuda issued in 1988 a set of stamps and a miniature sheet for the “Sailing week yacht regatta 1988”. All stamps and sheet shows sailing yachts of which I have not any information. Of the regatta Wikipedia has the following:

Antigua and Barbuda Sailing Week is a yacht regatta held at Nelson's Dockyard, St. Johns, Antigua. It is one of Antigua's most notable events. Founded in 1967, it is cited as one of the top regattas in the world and attracts an average 150-200 yachts, 1500 participants and 5000 spectators on average annually. In 2012 the regatta was held between 29 April and 4 May. In 2005, 24 countries were represented at the regatta. There are five main races held, including the English Harbour race, and at the end of the week the event finishes with the Lord Nelson's Ball.
Antigua & Barbuda 1988 30c/$5 sg 1190/93 and sgMS 1194, Scott 1112/16


Norfolk Island has not a deep water harbour, ships are required to anchor about a kilometre or so off shore. The cargo is then transferred from the hold of the ship to lighters. The 30 feet lighters, which are a local adaption of wooden whaling boats, are then towed by launch to the jetty.
Of the whalers used on Norfolk Island after which the lighters were built see: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=13176&p=14506&hilit=blessing+of+the+whalers#p14506

Loading jetties are located at Kingston and Cascade, but ships cannot get close to either of them. When a supply ship arrives, it is emptied by whaleboats towed by launches, five tonnes at a time. Which jetty is used depends on the prevailing weather on the day. The jetty on the leeward side of the island is often used. If the wind changes significantly during unloading/loading, the ship will move around to the other side. Visitors often gather to watch the activity when a supply ship arrives.

Much more is given on the following URL: ... nic-fleet/ ... olk_Island
Norfolk Island 1988 39 and 55c sg452/53, scott?. 1990 5c and10c sg483/84, scott?. 1993 45c sg 541, scott? 1996 $3.70 sg627, scott?, and 45c sg 629, scott? 2000 sgMS 731, scott? 2001 45c/$1.50 sg?, scott?


The Isle of Man issued two stamps in 1974 for the 1000th centenary of King Magnus Haraldson.

Under which name he was known has in the years many times spelled differently in the documents, but most probably it was King Magnus Haraldson, when born is also not known.
He was King of the Isle of Man and on the 8p stamp his fleet is seen. Twice in the year he sailed with this fleet of between 3600-4800 sails around the British Islands as admiral of the fleet to clear the waters around the islands from pirates especially the Danes and Normans. Also his coat of arms is depict on the stamp. Why are she rowing she are under sail, and why carry the shields outboard, so far I know the shields were only used during battle in this way, and clearly not a battle took place on this stamp.
The 4p stamp shows Magnus Haraldson in a stately barge with King Edgar of England on the River Dee in Wales. The skyline of the town in the background is of the town of Chester, a mistake has been made. The skyline of the town is from a drawing of the 14th century. Of the barge I have not any info, looks she is rowed by kings, all wearing a crown, King Edgar standing in the stern.
King Magnus Haraldson died in 977, but also other years have been given.

Source: Various internet sites.
Isle of Man 1974 4½p and 8p sg51/52, scott?


The full index of our ship stamp archive


Postby aukepalmhof » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:02 pm

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Mauritius issued in 1970 two stamps which shows us Port Louis in 1970 and 1783, the R2.50 stamps gives that it shows the port at the arrival of the French Admiral Suffren on board the HÉROS in 1783 in Port Louis, Ile de France (now Mauritius), comparing stamp with the stern drawing of the ship she is the ship in the front, with the other ship behind the HÉROS must be the VENGEUR of 1765 which arrived with the HÉROS in Port Louis. The stamp is designed after a drawing viewtopic.php?f=2&t=15957&p=18633#!lightbox[gallery]/1/ ... mauritius/

The HÉROS was built as a third-rate wooden hulled ship-of-the-line by the Toulon Arsenal in Toulon for the French Navy. Designed by Joseph-Marie-Blaise-Coulomb
1778 Keel laid down.
30 December 1778 launched as the HÉROS
Tonnage 1,500 ton burthen, dim. 54.57m length of gundeck, beam 14,02m, depth in hold 6.82m.
Armament: lower gun deck 29 – 36pdr., upper gun deck 30 – 18pdr., quarterdeck and forecastle 16 – 8 pdr. guns.
Crew ?
Commissioned ?.

HÉROS was a 74-gun ship of the line of the French Navy, known mostly for being the flagship of Pierre André de Suffren de Saint Tropez during the Anglo-French War.
She was built in 1778 at Toulon on a design by Joseph-Marie-Blaise Coulomb.
Six battles in 27 months
In 1781 she became part of Suffren's force, consisting of the 16-gun frigate FORTUNE, five ships of the line, eight troopships and a thousand soldiers, all entrusted with carrying the French war effort into the Indian Ocean. The other warships were one other 74 gun ship (the ANNIBAL) and three 64-gun ships (the VENGEUR, the SPHINX and the ARTÉSIEN). Suffren had been allowed to choose his officers and non-commissioned officers and so these were mainly from Provence, despite the fact that the force set off from Brest. There were around ten men per gun, making a total crew of 712.
On 22 March 1781 the force sailed for the south Atlantic and on 16 April it met a force under commodore George Johnstone waiting off Cape Verde to attack the Cape. Suffren sailed the HÉROS into the centre of the enemy formation to try to destroy it while it was still at anchor, in what became the battle of Porto Praya. The ship almost fought the battle alone, since the other French ships were not so well commanded or manoeuvred and so engaged the enemy little or not at all. For more than an hour the HÉROS was under continual fire from the British ships - she fired "as fast as it was possible to load and reload" noted a British report of the battle. The ANNIBAL was completely dismasted and her captain was killed, leaving the HÉROS to take her in tow after the battle.
HÉROS was stationed off the Cape from 21 June to 29 August to defend the Dutch colony from a British attack and to repair the damage done to her at Porto Praya. On 25 October she arrived at Mauritius Island to join the French ships already stationed there - these were the ships of the line ORIENT (74 guns), SÉVÉRE (64), BIZARRE (64), AJAX (64), BRILLANT (64) and FLAMAND (56), the frigates POURVOYEUSE (38), FINE (36) and BELLONE (32), the corvettes SUBTILE (24), SYLPHIDE (12) and DILIGENT (10) and the fireship PULVÉRISATEUR (6 or 4 guns). With HÉROS as Suffren's flagship, the eleven ships left the island on 7 December 1781 to attack the British force in the Indian Ocean
On 17 February 1782 the HÉROS fought at the battle of Sadras off the coast of Coromandel, attachking the centre of the British formation and seriously damaging below the waterline Edward Hughes' flagship, the 74 gun HMS SUPERB. HÉROS and the rest of the squadron then called at Pondichéry and Porto-Novo to disembark general Duchemin's troops (21 February to 23 March 1782).
On 12 April, still Suffren's flagship, she fought in the bitter battle of Providien off Sri Lanka. She attacked HMS SUPERB again at pistol-shot range, causing a fire to break out aboard the British ship. She then dismasted HMS MONMOUTH, forcing her to leave the British line. However, the HÉROS was also heavily damaged, losing the top of her foremast. This meant she was no longer maneouvrable and so forced to leave the battle, with Suffren switching his flag to the 64 gun AJAX mid-battle.[ The HÉROS then called at Batticaloa on Sri Lanka with the rest of the squadron for repairs and to rest her crew.
On 6 July HÉROS fought in the battle of Negapatam. The wind suddenly changed direction mid-battle and the broke up the two lines of battle, turning the engagement into a general mêlée. HÉROS saved the 64 gun BRILLANT which had lost her mainmast, then try to engage HMS SUPERB, but the British ship refused to engage and the two squadrons disengaged for the third time after an indecisive battle. HÉROS called at Cuddalore on 8 July and she and the squadron were based there until 1 August. There Suffren met nabab Haidar Ali, who had come with his army to ally with Suffren against the British. The force then sailed again for Sri Lanka.
She and the squadron called at Batticaloa again from 9 to 23 August 1782 to be reinforced by the 74 gun ILLUSTRE and the 60 gun SAINT-MICHEL and seventeen transports with troops and supplies. HÉROS was also placed on her side at Batticaloa to repair her hull, caulking and upperwork. Meanwhile, Suffren prepared an attempt to recapture Trincomalee, the main port on Sri Lanka. On 25 August, en route to Trincomalee, HÉROS had her stern and aftcastle lightly damaged in a collision with the ARTÉSIEN. She was still able to take part in the French landings on 26 August which ended in the surrender of the British garrison on 31 August and the port's recapture.
On 3 September 1782, in the battle of Trincomalee, HÉROS was again engaged against Hughes' squadron, which had come to the aid of Trincomalee. HÉROS, ILLUSTRE and AJAX attacked the British centre but the wind dropped on part of the French line and the rest of the squadron was unable to follow - several captains only bombarded the British ships from a distance contrary to Suffren's orders. A sketch by one of Suffren's officers shows HÉROS spending several hours at the height of the action in the crossfire of HMS SUPERB, HMS MONMOUTH (64 guns), HMS BURFORD (74 guns) and HMS EAGLE (64 guns). She lost her mainmast then her mizzenmast - the latter dragged the French flag into the water with it and for a moment the British thought that Suffren had struck his colours. Unengaged French ships of the line finally managed to tack into the battle and get the HÉROS to safety. Suffren moved to ORIENT and HÉROS was taken in tow by SPHINX, staying at Trincomalee for repairs until 1 October - she was repaired with matured timber and supplies taken from other ships of the line and transport ships.
She and the squadron sailed to Cuddalore in October to support the French garrison there, then under threat of siege. It wintered, resupplied and rested at Sumatra in November and December. On 12 November HÉROS became a floating embassy when Suffren received Alauddin Muhammad Syah, Sultan of Aceh on board her. This was the first French squadron of such size to visit the region and - fearing it was an invasion - Syah wished to find out whether or not its intent was hostile towards him. On 8 January 1783, HÉROS returned to the Indian coast and took part in a deception which captured a British frigate. She then arrived in Cuddalore on 6 February.
From February to June 1783 HÉROS cruised between the Coromandel and Trincomalee coasts, with Suffren making Trincomalee his main base. She was present on 10 March when the squadron was reinforced by a large force under Bussy (consisting of the 74 gun FENDANT and ARGONAUTE, the 66 gun HARDI and transports carrying 2,500 men). Suffren ordered this force to attack the British forces heading for Madras. HÉROS escorted the force before returning to Trincomalee and on 20 June she and the squadron fought the battle of Cuddalore. This was the final engagement between Hughes' and Suffren's squadrons - Suffren decided to give battle despite being outnumbered 18 to 15 in an attempt to lift the encirclement of Bussy's forces at Cuddalore. HÉROS took part in the battle, but orders received from the French king forced Suffren to lead the squadron from a frigate instead to avoid being wounded or captured - this directive had come into force after de Grasse's capture from the VILLE DE PARIS at the battle of the Saintes on 12 April the previous year. Hughes' squadron was forced to flee, saving Bussy's force as Suffren had hoped. However, Suffren was unable to capitalize upon the victory since nine days later he received a dispatch reporting the signing of a preliminary peace agreemenent in Europe five months earlier (what would become the Treaty of Paris).
HÉROS sailed back to France in triumph - she and VENGEUR sailed on 6 October and arrived at Mauritius on 12 November, where its governor M. de Souillac came on board to salute Suffren. On 29 November, now accompanied by the frigate CLÉOPATRE she sailed from the Cape, which she reached on 22 December. Nine British ships of the line were calling at the Cape at the same time - most of them had fought against Suffren but his renown was such that all the British officers came on board the HÉROS "to salute in person a master of their profession,[24] in a unique scene in French naval history. On 3 January 1784 the ship resumed her journey, reaching Toulon on 26 March to a rapturous reception and festivities at the city's hôtel de l’Intendance. On 6 April a local newspaper, the Courrier d'Avignon, reported a surprise dessert served to Suffren:
"It is written of this town [Toulon] that she presented to one diner a symbol, whose allegory was expressed with equal ingenuity and delicacy. As a dessert, it served a small sugar ship of the line modeled on the HÉROS, sailing the commander's flag; it was placed in a glass bowl below which was placed a laurel crown; at the poop of the ship was written the ship's name in large letters, Le HÉROS, and lower one read "At this table where everything flatters taste / With a shining circle around it, / This one must admire above all / It's Le HÉROS who virtue crowns".
Impressed by the quality of Hindustani textile manufacture and hoping to set up a textile industry on Malta, Suffren had embarked fifty Indian cotton manufacturers on the HÉROS for the voyage home. They were immediately sent from Toulon to Malta to use its local cotton.
Evolution during the Indian Campaign
The ship was on station for 27 months and then took 9 months to get back to France, meaning she was away from home waters for almost three years. This made her one of the most heavily engaged French warships of the time, though she was much-changed when she returned to Toulon - she had been dismasted twice (at Providien and Trincomalee) and repaired with modified rigging and masts from other ships and her launch had been so badly damaged by gunfire that Suffren suspended it from the stern at the level of the gallery.
The good health and discipline of the ship's crew (or at least those who remained on the flagship) is also instructive as to the kind of men being recruited in Brest in March 1781. However, it is difficult to trace changes in personnel over the course of the campaign - for example, the ship's muster does not take into account the presence of slaves, Lascars and sepoys, who at times formed a considerable proportion of the crew. This was especially true during the final months in the Indian Ocean, when large numbers of the original crew had been killed in action or lost to sickness, wounds or desertion The Indian sailors' pay was different and records of their service are incomplete.
Of the 19 officers and gardes de la marine who left Brest with the ship in March 1781, only 8 returned to Toulon aboard her - 8 had left the ship during the campaign, 2 had been killed in combat and 1 had died of his wounds.[29] 88 of the seamen were killed in battle, 99 died of sickness or wounds at sea and 399 were hospitalized at least once - of that 399, it is recorded that 41 died in hospital, though that is definitely an under-estimate. 49 men deserted. Total losses were 365 out of a complement of 712 men on departure from Brest. Suffren made up these losses by taking men from frigates and transport ships, recruiting locally and redistributing among the squadron the crews of ORIENT and BIZARRE, which both ran aground in 1782. Research is complicated by these crew movements and by the fact that Suffren gave preference to sailors from Provence for the voyage home, so that they could return home more easily to their family, since he chose Toulon not Brest as his destination. It is estimated that around 40% of the original crew did not return to Toulon.
Later career
Suffren died in December 1788 and HÉROS remained stationed at Toulon with the Levant squadron. Early in 1793 war broke out again between France and Britain and HÉROS was seized by the British as she was moored at Toulon when a Royalist cabale surrendered the city to them on 29 August. As the Siege of Toulon ended in the liberation of the city, Captain Sidney Smith had her scuttled by fire on 18–19 December along with THÉMISTOCLE and six other ships of the line which he was unable to take with him as prize ships. ... 9ros_(1778) ... ip&id=2082
Mauritius 1970 2R50 sg423, scott?
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