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The Rise of the English Shipping Industry in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries$
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Ralph Davis

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780986497384

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780986497384.001.0001

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Ships and Shipbuilders in the Eighteenth Century

Ships and Shipbuilders in the Eighteenth Century

(p.55) Chapter 4 Ships and Shipbuilders in the Eighteenth Century
The Rise of the English Shipping Industry in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries

Ralph Davis

Liverpool University Press

This chapter explores the developments in shipbuilding and the evolving role of shipbuilders across England over the course of the eighteenth century. Like the previous chapter it often compares British shipbuilding with Dutch shipbuilding due to their interlinked histories and the presence of Dutch prize-ships across England as a result of the Dutch wars. Shipbuilding in the eighteenth century is examined closely to determine the extent to which British ships began to resemble Dutch flyboats. It also considers changes in manning levels as technology increased; the shipbuilding efforts on colonial land; the capture of prizes; and the threat of cheaper American shipbuilding disrupting Britain’s global shipping precence. The latter part of the chapter traces the development of shipbuilding technology and the necessary physical changes to the ships themselves. It concludes by asserting that British merchant ships developed tremendously in over the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, though not nearly as sharply as they would with the arrival of steam.

Keywords:   British Shipbuilding, Dutch Shipbuilding, Seafaring Conditions, Dutch Wars, Shipbuilding Technology, Dutch Flyboats, Regional Shipbuilding

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