Flemish carrack, c 1490.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Model (scale 1:60). The details for this model come from a contemporary print by the Flemish master 'WA'. The complete transformation from the single mast and sail to the three-masted ship was completed within the 15th century. Another important change which took place at the same time was the change from clincher building of ship hulls, where the planks overlap, to carvel building where they are all flush with each other. The bow shows the high, two-decked, overhanging forecastle typical of a carrack. The round stern is surmounted by a lower superstructure. The rig is a good example of a very early three-masted ship prior to the introduction of a main topsail.