A Boat on the Side

Sailing the Past Book Review

Edited by Jenny Bennett

An excellent book for all those fascinated by our sailing forebears and their (sometimes) excellent vessels from triremes to cogs.

But surely there can be no sexier hull than a Viking longboat – find out how they were put together and how they perform.

When I was a student in the 1960s I visited the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde, Denmark and was blown away by the simple beauty of these ships.

I’m not the only one who admires the Viking’s boats of course, lots of people have made a good living designing variations on the longboat theme but there’s nothing like the lines of the originals to ramp up the gaspometer – Respect!!

There’s much more, of course, including the weird (several) and wonderful – Pride of Baltimore, a wicked replica topsail schooner. The first one was crap to sail but looked like a million dollars and ultimately sank. Undeterred, the good Baltimoreans built Pride No II which is fast, weatherly, safe, seaworthy and looks like a billion dollars – dream on Derek!

A wonderful little book which will be gladly added to my growing marine library in the new bookshelves (photos soon!)