Matthew (1497); Passenger/cargo vessel; Exploration/research vessel; Caravel

Scale: 1:25. A modern full hull plank on frame model of the three-masted sailing ship ‘Mathew’ (1497) from the port of Bristol, and used by John Cabot in 1497 for a voyage to ‘discover’ the ‘New Founde Landes’ now known as North America.

This is a modern model based upon the historical full sized reconstruction of this vessel by the Naval Architect, Colin Mudie. Although there are no contemporary illustrations or written references about this particular vessel, the final design was a result of several known references of similar ships. The model is fully rigged with sails, flags and all the necessary rigging, together with a windlass, main bitts, bilge pumps, guns, and a boat stored on chocks in the waist. There are also three carved crew figures carrying out various activities to give an idea of the scale of the actual vessel. There are three cabins in the stern castle, which have been fitted with furnishings and equipment as probably used by Cabot on his voyages of discovery. The external hull is fitted with vertical riders as well as wales, which provided extra strength and protection for the planking. The large rudder is mounted on the sternpost with gudgeons and pintles and was steered by a tiller on the main deck.

The fifty ton ‘Mathew’ resembled a 'caravela redonda' which was a carvel built, square-rigged caravel common from the latter half of the 15th century.

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