SHIPS AND BOATS

Click here to return to HOME page.

This post is in category WIND AND WATER ENGINEERING

<><><> start of synopsis ><><><><><>

Muslims did not invent the lateen sail.
Lateen means that the sails are nearly parallel to the keel.
Both square lateen sails and triangular lateen sails were used by the Romans during the 4th century. Modern lantern sails are almost always triangular.
An article at muslimheritage.com  misidentifies  a “ship’s boat” (a rowed boat to travel between ship and shore, also used by Christians of that era) as a “lifeboat”.
Actually, Muslim ship captains were not much concerned with the lives of non-Muslim members of the crew.

<><><> end of synopsis ><><><><><>

meister_der_predigten_des_heiligen_gregor_von_nazianz_001

Byzantine ship with a square lateen sail [Ship is not depicted to the same scale as the people.]

LATEEN SAILS
Muslims did not invent the lateen sail.
Lateen means that the sails are “Latin-rig” fore-and-aft, parallel to the keel.
Both square lateen sails and triangular lateen sails were used by the Romans during the 4th century.
The advantage of rigging the sail parallel to the keel is that it permits tacking into the wind.
Triangular lateen sails have the advantage of fluttering less than square lateen sails. [In modern usage, the word “lateen” usually refers to triangular sails on small  sailing boats.]


LIFEBOATS
An article at muslimheritage.com mentions a “lifeboat” carried aboard a Muslim cargo ship, but it actually was a “ship’s boat” (a rowed boat to travel between ship and shore), also used by Christians of that era.
Muslim ship captains were not much concerned with the lives of non-Muslim members of the crew. Some sharia law judges approved of the practice of throwing non-Muslim crew members overboard if the ship was overloaded with cargo and in danger of taking on water.


Image from a 9th century Byzantine Christian miniature painting, via Wikimedia Commons.
image credit https://wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Meister_der_Predigten_des_Heiligen_Gregor_von_Nazianz_001.jpg#mw-jump-to-license

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s