ship wreck

Researchers Uncover Oldest Seafaring Ship in Dutch Waters

Researchers have found a Dutch shipwreck from the beginning of the sixteenth century. 

This is the oldest find of a seagoing ship in Dutch waters ever. The wreck was found during the clearing of sea containers, which fell overboard from the MSC Zoe on New Year's Eve.

Dutch Minister Van Engelshoven of Education, Culture and Science: 'This find can justifiably be called a lucky conincidence. This spectacular discovery was made during the recovery of the containers. I am very curious to know what other information will come to light. That is also the beauty of archaeology: it stimulates your curiosity and imagination. I think this find really enriches the Dutch heritage.' 

Copper Plates and Wooden Beams

During the salvage operation copper plates and wooden beams were found, after which archaeological research took place immediately. The wooden beams appear to have come from a ship with a smooth hull, probably 30 m long. The ship transported copper plates.

Felled in 1536

The wood was examined. This research shows that the wood was felled in 1536 and that the ship was built in the Netherlands around 1540. The copper plates are dated around the same period. It is remarkable that the plates have marks of the Fugger family. In the sixteenth century, the Fugger family had a monopoly on copper production. This find is of very high cultural and archaeological value.

Research on Site

Additional investments by this cabinet in maritime technology will enable research to be carried out on site in the short term. The Cultural Heritage Agency will continue to investigate the shipwreck found.

Picture: General picture of a ship wreck.

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.

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