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The Shipbuilding Text Of Michael Of Rhodes

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Chapter Summary

Written in 1434 and 1435, the Michael of Rhodes manuscript contains the first known Treatise of Shipbuilding. Michael original manuscript contains 204 numbered folios, or 408 pages, in a codex that is not much bigger in size than a thick, modern, hardcover novel. The first 180 pages concern mathematics. Ships in Michaels manuscript are dealt with in an abbreviated manner. It is believed that Michael copied much his shipbuilding material from existing documents. Turning to design issues, it should first be made clear that Michaels text is not about design per se. Rather, he gives lists of dimensions that record the shapes of ships that have already been built. The purpose of the manuscript was not to aid shipbuilders, but to influence the elections to office on which Michaels livelihood depended.

Keywords: manuscript; Michael of Rhodes; shipbuilding material

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