Tonnages and displacements in the 16th century

Questions associated with the size of ships suggested in historical documents are relevant to giving an idea of the volume of cargoes, the size of crews, cost of freights, or when trying to evaluate competitive advantages in war and commerce. Good estimates are often difficult to obtain from the written record, although some values concerning basic hull dimensions are sometimes mentioned. The establishment of reliable relations between registered capacity, as expressed in coeval documents, and displacement, as it is defined nowadays, would be helpful to both historical and archaeological research. This paper probes into the relations between a number of known formulas to calculate tonnages in the 16th century, and the reconstructed hull of the Pepper Wreck, an archaeologically excavated shipwreck dated to 1606.
Filipe Castro
Journal of Archaeological Science, 40 (2013) 1136-1143 pp

Funded by

Host institution

Useful links



Blog ForSEADiscovery



Blog Nautical Archaelogy



The ForSEAdiscovery project follows the spirit and the text of the  UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage especially in the matters detailed in its Annex

Underwater Cultural Heritage

Social networks