Here I go again, waffling on about my rather strange pull to the early Seventeenth Century.
I’ve not had anything appear to me, or had any inkling to write or investigate anything for a few months now. Not only that, but I haven’t had any images appear in my mind of the ship or three that used to appear regularly.
I have been noticing, rather coincidentally, that quite a few bloggers of late have been including images of galleon-looking ships with their posts, but again, even though I noticed them, they didn’t scream out to me “Look… there’s some information for you!”
Currently running on British TV is an advertisement for a part-work magazine, allowing the collector to build a replica of a ship called the HMS Sovereign of the Seas, apparently the largest warship of the Seventeenth Century.
A ship, I’m sorry to say, I have never come across in any of my research when looking into facts about that particular period to see if anything actually jumps out at me and says ‘this is it!’
The advert jumped out at me on television today. I have seen it a few times before, but it was mostly background. Today, the name Sovereign of the Seas went through me like a sharp, cool wind.
I had my mobile phone to hand, and quickly Googled the name of the ship. And true enough, the ship existed. There were lots of links, but I decided to have a quick look at the images of the ship. And yes, it did have a familiar feel to the ship(s) that I saw/see in my mind’s eye.
Before I go on about the ship itself, an odd thing stood out to me on the TV yesterday. I was watching one of those antique dealer programmes that seem to be filling the airtime quite a lot nowadays, and an old gold Dutch Guilder sovereign coin was being featured. A very shiny coin in fact, which was why it stood out so much. The show carried on, and I carried on with my day, thinking nothing more of it.
So, the HMS Sovereign of the Seas. Not sovereign of the sea, any sea, but all of the seas… as in Rule Britannia, Britannia Rules the Waves. Talk about staking claim to territory.
King Charles I requested, more likely ordered, the ship to be built in 1634.
She was launched on October 13th 1637… October 13th, incidentally, is the birthday of my brother (only not in the Seventeenth Century, I hasten to add! Or, not this time around, at least.) She had 102 cannons when she was launched, making her the most heavily armoured ship on the entire planet at the time. However, by 1642, my year, she only had 90 cannons.
I think this may be too much of a coincidence, but a Google search shows, on the first results page, that the weight of the ship was 1,637 tons, but as she was launched in 1637, I’m erring on the side of caution and putting this down to a typo rather than actual fact. Imagine a ship weighing exactly the same as the year it was launched in? That really is too much of a coincidence, even for me, but I’ll look further into this at a later time.
A few months ago, I received an email from my good friend and fellow blogger, Kate Shrewsday (I’ve mentioned Kate in the Wonders of the World post the other day – you may have heard about her… if not check out her blog!), which contained an image of a captain’s ring from 1620:
The Google image search that I did brought back a very similar image, and although this was a medal rather than a ring, it put me in mind of Kate’s email, even though the image in Kate’s picture was reversed. That to one side, it looks as though both ships are facing the same way.
Now, I’m not saying I’m certain that the Sovereign of the Seas is the ship that I see from time to time sailing away or in to land in the image in my mind’s eye, but she was in service in 1642, she was a very large ship, and she does fit the image, in a photo-fit kind of way. Not entirely identical, but close enough.
I’ll never know for certain if this is the ship I see or not, even if I have a past life regression, I’m now aware of the ship, and she may feed through into my sub-conscious, even if I do find myself regressed back to 1642. But, I’m happy to go with this for now.
However, now that I’ve got this far, what do you bet that further information will come to light in the next few weeks?
My quest, as always, continues…