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Egyptian Sea Merchant Ship

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Development of the sea trade in ancient Egypt caused improvements on the ship construction. The bow and the stern beams appeared. They had slots where planking boards were installed. The fore overhang was lessened. The steering oars were increased and fastened in firm rowlocks. However due to insufficient longitudinal tensile strength the hull was still tied with a rope on special supports. There were small platforms in the bow and the stern of the ship. The sail rigging consisted of a mast with square sails and of two yards crooked at their ends. The binding round a rope stone used as an anchor. Displacement of Egyptian sea ships (in 1500 B. C.) reached 60 - 80 t. Of course they built larger ships for transportation of building materials, stone blocks for pyramids and obelisks. Small wedges-rowlocks were fastened along the board plank sheers at which short oars with spear-shaped blades were fastened. Magic pictures or an image of an eye were painted on the enlarging 'feathers' of the stem and the sternpost. There are no pictures of ships of the Middle Reign. In accordance with multiple sources we can judge that ships of the New Reign differed greatly from their predecessors. Their hulls were stronger as they used beams trimmed out of long logs of fir trees carried from the Lebanon. There was also the inner keel but there was no binding band. Ships became sharper, their bows and sterns became slightly higher. Edges of cross beams installed on keel beams extruded from planking and that made the ship stronger. To avoid longitudinal sagging they still stretched the longitudinal rope. The strong mast carried four-angled not very high but a very wide sail fastened on two yards. Oars had rowlocks. Two large stern oars were installed on supports and they had handles for steering

 

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