13 :: Mediterranean Merchant Ship

In times past, the Mediterranean was a sailing Mecca and the birthplace of the lateen sail. Maritime trade flourished there. Lecouvie reminds us, in his own way, of the role played by merchanters in the training of the great discoverers and in the improvement of their ships. We owe them the development of robust and easily manoeuvrable ships.


Among the merchants of the Middle Ages, responsible for many shipbuilding and sailing innovations, Venetians loom large indeed. Their contacts with Arab populations and the trading posts of the Levant enabled them to appropriate tools, instruments and techniques issued from solid maritime traditions.