Advertisement

Graffiti of Ships in the Bahá’í Mansion at Mazra‘ih, Israel

  • Yaacov Kahanov
Article

Abstract

Graffiti of ships were found on a wall of a courtyard of the Bahá’í mansion in the village of Mazra‘ih, near Akko, Israel. It is suggested that three graffiti depict frigates, near Akko, the largest of about 850 t burden, some time in the second quarter of the nineteenth century. This is evidence for maritime activities at Akko in these years, and for the type of ships.

Keywords

Graffiti Frigate Mazra‘ih Akko 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I am grateful to Mr. Y. Lerer of the Israel Antiquities Authority, who discovered the graffiti and drew my attention to them; to Mr. E. Stern, the Archaeologist of the Western Galilee, Israel Antiquities Authority, who permitted and supported the study; to Ms. A. Shapiro and Ms. R. Pollak who skillfully drew the graffiti; and to Mr. J. Tresman for the English editing. I wish to thank the Bahá’í World Center who made the study of the graffiti accessible.

Glossary

The terminology below is based on that in Kemp (1976), and should be interpreted in the context of the graffiti.
Amidships, midships

The middle of the hull, midway between bow and stern.

Backstay

Standing rigging from the tops of sections of the masts to the sides of the hull.

Beam

The maximum width of the hull.

Bobstay

A chain or heavy wire rigging running from the bowsprit to the stem.

Boom

A spar to which the bottom of a sail is attached.

Bowline

Line leading forward from the edge of a sail to aid in sailing close to the wind.

Bowsprit

A spar projecting forward over the bow, to which the forestays are attached and the jibs are set.

Decks

Horizontal platforms, which extend the full length of the ship. The classical frigate had a single armed deck, which in this article is termed “gundeck” and relates to the middle horizontal line; “deck” refers to the upper platform, and corresponds here to the upper line; “lower deck” is about the level of the waterline, the lowest line.

Dolphin striker

A spar projecting down from the bowsprit.

Draft

The depth of water which a ship draws.

Driver, spanker

A fore-and-aft sail set on the lower mizenmast at the stern.

Endpost

Stem or sternpost.

False keel

A timber running along the whole length of the underside of the keel.

Freeboard

The height of the deck above the waterline amidships.

Forestay

A part of the standing rigging, from the foremast to the bowsprit or stem, which supports the mast, and on which a jib is set.

Jib

A triangular sail set on the stays of the foremast.

Jib-boom, flying jib-boom

Forward extensions of the bowsprit.

Keel

The main longitudinal timber of most wooden ship, which extends the whole length of the vessel and to which the stem, sternpost and the frames are attached. The backbone of the hull.

Keelson

A longitudinal timber set on the keel to add strength.

Martingale stay

The stay which holds the jib-boom down.

Mast

A vertical spar set in a ship to carry sails.

Lower mast

The lowest section of a mast, mounted on the keelson and passing through the deck.

Topmast

The second section of a complete mast, above the lower mast.

Topgallant mast

The third section of a complete mast, above the topmast, the uppermost of the three.

From bow to stern the order is:

Foremast, Mainmast, Mizenmast.

Pennant

A narrow tapering flag flown from the masthead.

Royal

The sail set next above the topgallant-sail, the fourth sail from the deck.

Sails

An assemblage of cloths, which is designed to catch the wind, to give motion to a sailing vessel. Their names in ascending vertical order are: course, topsail, topgallant and royal, and according to the mast, e.g. Mizen course, Main topsail, Fore topgallant sail.

Sheet

Line for trimming a sail.

Ship

Vessel with a bowsprit and three masts, each with topmast and topgallant mast, and square rigged on all three masts.

Shrouds

Standing rigging from the top of the lower masts to the sides of the hull, to support the masts laterally.

Square rig

The arrangement of sails in a vessel where the main driving sails are laced to yards which lie square to the mast.

Standing rigging

The fixed and permanent rigging of a ship.

Stay

Part of the standing rigging, which supports the mast.

Stem

The foremost timber forming the bow.

Sternpost

The aftermost timber forming the stern.

Vessel

Any boat or ship which is not otherwise defined.

Waterline

An imaginary line formed by the water on the hull of a ship marking the level at which she floats in the water.

Yard

A spar crossing the masts, from which a sail is set.

References

  1. Af Chapman, F. H. (1970) [1775]. Architectura Navalis Mercatoria. Verlag Delius, Klasing, Bielefeld and Berlin.Google Scholar
  2. Alderson, R. C. (1843). Notes on Acre and Some of the Coast Defences of Syria (Papers on Subjects Connected with the Duties of the Corps of Royal Engineers, VI), John Weale, London.Google Scholar
  3. Ali Bey, a-A (Domingo Badia y Leblich). (1816). Travels of Ali Bey in Morocco, Tripoli, Cyprus, Egypt, Arabia, Syria, and Turkey between the Years 1803 and 1807. vol. II. John Conrad, Philadelphia.Google Scholar
  4. Anderson, R. C. (1952). Naval Wars in the Levant 1559–1853, Liverpool University Press, Liverpool.Google Scholar
  5. Balyuzi, H. M. (1980). Bahá’u’lláh. The King of Glory, George Ronald, Oxford.Google Scholar
  6. Barrow, J. (1848). The life and correspondence of admiral Sir William Sidney Smith, vol. I, Richard Bentley, London.Google Scholar
  7. Basch, L. (1987). Le Musée Imaginaire de la Marine Antique, Institut Hellénique pour la Préservation de la Tradition Nautique, Athens.Google Scholar
  8. Batchvarov, K. (2006). A Black Sea Merchantman. In Blue, L., Hocker, F., and Englert, A. (eds.), Connected by the Sea. Proceedings of the Tenth International Symposium on Boat and Ship Archaeology, Roskilde 2003, Oxbow, Oxford, pp. 306–311.Google Scholar
  9. Beltrame, C. (2010). The Excavation of the Brick Mercure of the Regno Italico (1812). Why to Investigate a Military Vessel from the Beginning of the 19th Century? In Bockius, R. (ed.), Between the Seas—Transfer and Exchange in Nautical Technology. 11th International Symposium on Boat and Ship Archaeology, Mainz, September 2006, ISBSA 11, Römisch-Germanischen Zentralmuseums, Mainz, pp. 249–256.Google Scholar
  10. Beltrame, C., and Gaddi, D. (2002). Report on the First Research Campaign on the Napoleonic Brick, Mercure, Wrecked off Lignano, Udine, Italy in 1812. International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 31: 60–73.Google Scholar
  11. Ben-Arieh, Y. (1975). The Population of the Large Towns in Palestine During the First Eighty Years of the Nineteenth Century, According to Western Sources. In Ma‘oz, M. (ed.), Studies on Palestine During the Ottoman Period, Magnes Press, The Hebrew University, Yad Izhak Ben-Zvi, Jerusalem, pp. 49–69.Google Scholar
  12. Boudriot, J. (1993). The History of the French Frigate 1650–1850, Jean Boudriot Publications, Rotherfield.Google Scholar
  13. Browne, W. G. (1799). Travels in Africa, Egypt, and Syria, from the Year 1792 to 1798, T. Cadell and W. Davies, Strand; and T. N. Longman and O. Rees, Paternoster-Row, London.Google Scholar
  14. Bruyn, C. (1725). Voyage au Levant, Tôme second, Jean-Baptiste-Claude Bauche, Paris.Google Scholar
  15. Buckingham, J. S. (1822). Travels in Palestine, Through the Countries of Bashan and Gilead, East of the River Jordan, vol. I, Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown, London.Google Scholar
  16. Casson, L. (1995). Ships and Seamanship in the Ancient World, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.Google Scholar
  17. Clarke, E. D. (1812). Travels in Various Countries of Europe Asia and Africa. Part the Second, Greece Egypt and the Holy Land. Section the First, T. Cadell and W. Davies, London.Google Scholar
  18. Clowes, L. (1901). The Royal Navy: A History from the Earliest Times to the Present, vols. IV and VI, Sampson Law, Marston, London.Google Scholar
  19. Cohen, A. (1973). Palestine in the 18th Century: Patterns of Government and Administration, Magnes, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem.Google Scholar
  20. Colledge, J. J., and Warlow, B. (2006). Ships of the Royal Navy, Chatham, London.Google Scholar
  21. Conder, C. R., and Kitchener, H. H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine. Memoirs of the Topography, Orography, Hydrography and Archaeology. Volume I. Sheets I–VI. Galilee. Palmer, E. H., and Besant, W. (eds). The Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund, London.Google Scholar
  22. Cvikel, D., and Kahanov, Y. (2009). The Akko 1 Shipwreck: the First Two Seasons. International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 38: 38–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Dichter, B. (1973). The Maps of Acre. An Historical Cartography, Municipality of Acre, Acre.Google Scholar
  24. Dichter, B. (2000). Akko, Sites from the Turkish Period. Carmel, A., and Baumwoll, Z. (eds.), Gottlieb Schumacher Institute, University of Haifa, Haifa.Google Scholar
  25. Dothan, M. (1976). Akko: Interim Excavation Report First Season, 1973/4. Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 224: 1–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Dothan, M. (1993). Tell Acco. In Stern, E. (ed.), The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land, vol. 1, Israel Exploration Society, Carta, Jerusalem, pp. 17–24.Google Scholar
  27. Dotan, M., and Goldmann, Z. (1993). Acco. In Stern, E. (ed.), The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land, vol. 1, Israel Exploration Society, Carta, Jerusalem, pp. 16–17.Google Scholar
  28. Elkin, D., Argüeso, A., Grosso, M., Murray, C., Vainstub, D., Bastida, R., and Dellino-Musgrave, V. (2007). Archaeological Research on HMS Swift: a British Sloop-of-War Lost off Patagonia, Southern Argentina, in 1770. International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 36: 32–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Esslemont, J. E. (1970). Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era. An Introduction to the Bahá’í Faith, Bahá’í Publishing Trust, Wilmette.Google Scholar
  30. Falconer, W. (1970 [1769]). An Universal Dictionary of the Marine, T. Cadell, London.Google Scholar
  31. Ford, B., Borgens, A., Bryant, W., Marshall, D., Hitchcock, P., Arias, C., and Hamilton, D. (2008). Archaeological Excavation of the Mardi Gras Shipwreck (16GM01), Gulf of Mexico Continental Slope. U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans.Google Scholar
  32. Frumin, M. (2004). Russian Navy Mapping Activities in the Eastern and Southern Mediterranean (Late 18th Century). The Portolan: Journal of the Washington Map Society 60: 13–26.Google Scholar
  33. Frumin, M., Rubin, R., and Gavish, D. (2002). A Russian Naval Officer's Chart of Haifa Bay 1772. Imago Mundi 54: 125–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Gardiner, R. (1992). The First Frigates, Nine-pounder and Twelve-pounder Frigates, 1748–1815, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  35. Gardiner, R. (1999). Warships of the Napoleonic Era, Chatham, London.Google Scholar
  36. Gardiner, R. (2000). Frigates of the Napoleonic Wars, Chatham, London.Google Scholar
  37. Gichon, M. (2003). Napoleon in the Holy Land, Effi Meltzer, Reut (in Hebrew).Google Scholar
  38. Harland, J. (2003). Seamanship in the Age of Sail, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  39. Kahanov, Y., Shotten-Hallel, V., and Cvikel, D. (2008). A Graffito of a Nineteenth-century Armed Ship from Akko, Israel. Mariner’s Mirror 94: 388–404.Google Scholar
  40. Kemp, P. (ed.) (1976). The Oxford Companion to Ships & the Sea, Oxford University Press, London.Google Scholar
  41. Lambert, A. (1991). The Last Sailing Battlefleet: Maintaining Naval Mastery, 1815–1850, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  42. Landström, B. (1961). The Ship: An Illustrated History, Doubleday, Garden City, NY.Google Scholar
  43. Lavery, B. (1984). The Ship of the Line. Volume II: Design, Construction and Fittings, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  44. Lavery, B. (1988). The Ship of the Line, Volume I: The Development of the Battlefleet, 1650–1850, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis.Google Scholar
  45. Lavery, B. (1989). Nelson’s Navy: The Ships, Men and Organization, 1793–1815, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  46. Le Strange, G. (1965). Palestine under the Moslems: A Description of Syria and the Holy Land from AD 650 to 1500, Khayats, Beirut.Google Scholar
  47. Lees, J. (1984). The Masting and Rigging of English Ships of War, 1625–1860, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis.Google Scholar
  48. Lynch, W. F. (1852). Official Report of the United States Expedition to Explore the Dead Sea and the River Jordan, John Murphy, Baltimore.Google Scholar
  49. Lynch, W. F. (1855). Narrative of the Expedition to the River Jordan and the Dead Sea, James Blackwood, Paternoster Row, London.Google Scholar
  50. MacGregor, D. R. (1984). Merchant Sailing Ships, 1815–1850: Supremacy of Sail, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  51. MacGregor, D. R. (1988a). Fast Sailing Ships, Their Design and Construction, 1775–1875, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis.Google Scholar
  52. MacGregor, D. R. (1988b). Merchant Sailing Ships, 1775–1815, Sovereignty of Sail, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis.Google Scholar
  53. Makhouly, N., and Johns, C. N. (1946). Guide to Acre, Government of Palestine, Department of Antiquities, Jerusalem.Google Scholar
  54. Marquardt, K. H. (2003). Eighteenth-Century Rigs and Rigging, Conway Maritime Press, London.Google Scholar
  55. Marriott, J. A. R. (1969). The Eastern Question, an Historical Study in European Diplomacy, Oxford University Press, London.Google Scholar
  56. Molyneux, T. H. (1848). Expedition to the Jordan and the Dead Sea. Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London 18: 104–130.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Moore, A. (1926). Sailing Ships of War 1800–1860, Halton and Truscott Smith, London.Google Scholar
  58. Philbrick, N. (2000). In the Heart of the Sea, Viking, New York.Google Scholar
  59. Philipp, T. (2001). Acre: The Rise and Fall of a Palestinian City, 1730–1831, Columbia University Press, New York.Google Scholar
  60. Pocock, T. (2001). Smith and the Siege of Acre 1799: Sea Power Decisive on Land. In Hore, P. (ed.), Seapower Ashore. 200 Years of Royal Navy Operation on Land, Chatham, London, pp. 26–38.Google Scholar
  61. Preaulx, M. F. (1803). St. John of Acre Defended by the English, 2nd May 1799. Drawn at Constantinople from a sketch by F. B. Spilsbury of H. M. S. Le Tigre. E. Orme, London.Google Scholar
  62. Raban, A. (1993). Maritime Acco. In Stern, E. (ed.), The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land, vol. 1, Israel Exploration Society, Carta, Jerusalem, pp. 29–31.Google Scholar
  63. Raban, A., and Linder, E. (1978). Notes and News: Israel. International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 7: 238–243.Google Scholar
  64. Roberts, D. (1989). The Holy Land. 5 parts Ran, N. (ed.), Volume 2, Part 2, Galilee and Lebanon. Nachman Ran, Terra Sancta Arts, Tel Aviv.Google Scholar
  65. Ruhe, D. S. (1983). Door of Hope: A Century of the Bahá’í Faith in the Holy Land, George Ronald, Oxford.Google Scholar
  66. Rustum, A. J. (1926). Notes on Akka and its Defences Under Ibrahim Pasha. Prepared for the Archaeological Congress of Syria and Palestine, American University of Beirut, Beirut.Google Scholar
  67. Schein, S. (1991). Fideles Crucis. The Papacy, the West, and the Recovery of the Holy Land, 1274–1314, Clarendon, Oxford.Google Scholar
  68. Serres, D., and Serres, J. T. (1979). Liber Nauticus, Scholar Press, London.Google Scholar
  69. Smith, E. (1840). Sailing Directions for the Coast of Syria from Ancient Joppa to the Gulf of Iskenderoon, to Accompany Chart and Views of the Coast, Dean and Munday, London.Google Scholar
  70. Steel, D. (1794). The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship, David Steel, London.Google Scholar
  71. Steel, D. (1805). The Shipwright's Vade-Mecum: A Clear and Familiar Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Ship-Building, P. Steel, London.Google Scholar
  72. Steffy, J. R. (1994). Wooden Ship Building and the Interpretation of Shipwrecks, Texas A&M University Press, College Station.Google Scholar
  73. Taherzadeh, A. (1974). The Revelation of Bahá’u’llá, 3rd ed., George Ronald, Oxford.Google Scholar
  74. Thompson, C. G. (1850). A View of the Holy Land, its Present Inhabitants, their Manners and Customs, Polity and Religion. Antiquities and Natural History of Egypt, Asia, and Arabia, James Rossell, Wheeling, VA.Google Scholar
  75. Walsh, M. J. K. (2008). “On of the Princypalle Havenes of the See”: The port of Famagusta and the ship graffiti in the Church of St George of the Greeks, Cyprus. International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 37: 115–129.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Wilson, J. (1847). Lands of the Bible Visited and Described, William Whyte, Edinburgh.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime StudiesUniversity of HaifaHaifaIsrael

Personalised recommendations