Trireme

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Chris Countiss
9 November 2009
Dr. Hopkins
Section 2 - 9 a.m.
Trireme
1) Intro
(a) Largest warships for more than 200 years (8-4) (b) “particularly suited for fighting with the ram” (4-80) (c) Name (8-54)
* Triremes in latin
(i) Implies triple arrangement of oars
* Triereis in Greek
(ii) Triple arrangement of some kind
(iii) Maybe from earlier ships
2) Predecessors and competitors
(d) According to thucydides first greek warships built in 700BC (8-4) (e) Penteconter
* Single row with 25 rowers on each side
* Roughly 30 meters long
* Sometimes had a sail
* Did not have a full deck
* Suitable for open water
* Used for trading and warfare
(f) Bireme
* Probably Phoenician (8 – 4)
* 700BC (8 – 4)
* Two rows of oars (11-128)
* Evolved from a penteconter (11-128)
* Lead to development of a trireme
* 24 meters long
* Sail and oars
* Improved agility over monoremes (11-140)
(g) Greek Galley (10- 1-3)
* Primarily oars but also sails
* Very long
* Had an ouboard platform or aposits
* Commonly rammed other ships
* Wide turning arc and not suited for open seas 3) History
(h) Very little evidence
* Written sources
* Painted pottery
* Carved stone
* “indirect archaeological evidence such as the dimensions of excavated ship sheds that once housed triremes” (1) (i) Origin
* Herodotos says built in Egypt in 600BC(8 – 4) * Sidonians were first to invent (12 – 485) * “Vessels of that type were not built in large numbers by the Greeks until a little before 500BC” (8-4) (j) Why needed

4) Design
(k) Basics
* 3 rows of oars with 1 man per oar
* Could hold 15 tons (8-31)
* “specially designed by Themistocles ‘for speed and quick turning’ (6-2) * Flat-bottomed (4-89)
(l) Oars and sails
* Oars
(iv) “very moderate size and weight; for a crew could make a forced march when each man was carrying his oar and its appurtenances.” (8-10) 1. 9 to 9.5 cubits (13.5 ft) (4-82)

(v) “All the oars were worked against tholes, to which they were fastened by leather loops” (12-489) (vi) Ports “ Since these were only some 18 inches or so above the waterline, a leather bag fitted snugly about the oar and its opening to keep out the sea.” (4-83) (vii) 200 oars total

2. 170 for rowers
3. 30 for those “who did not row in the banks” (8-10) (viii) Positions (8-10)
4. 62 upper deck
a. More because “the converging lines of the gunwale left insufficient room for benches of three rowers each” (12-488) b. “the tholepins for their oars were set in an outrigger that projected about two feet or so from the side of the ship.” (4-83,84) 5. 54 “each of the lower banks”

6. Rowers of Lower bank – thalamite (8-55) c. Sat in a thalamus or chamber
7. Rowers of middle bank – zygite(8-55) d. Sat upon the zyga or beams
8. Rowers of the upper bank – thranite (4-87)

* Sails
(ix) Types
9. “The sails were commonly of...
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