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TheIT
06-23-2010, 11:58 PM
Looking for information about children on old time sailing ships. From what little I've seen, sailors in old navies used to begin their training as boys. What tasks would they be given? What would they learn? How old would they be? Would a boy be sent up into the rigging?

I'm working out details for a story set in my fantasy universe where a boy has been sent to a merchant ship to learn what it's like to be a sailor. He's temporarily apprenticed to his cousin, a skilled sailor in his twenties who has been on board this ship for years. The story is going to start on the ship then leave it, but I need some details about life on board ship.

Any suggested reading?

Thanks in advance.

DeleyanLee
06-24-2010, 12:03 AM
Read the first few novels in the Horatio Hornblower series for a start. ;)

TheIT
06-24-2010, 12:08 AM
Read the first few novels in the Horatio Hornblower series for a start. ;)

I've been rewatching the series, too. Great adaptations. :D

:e2steer:

I also started reading Treasure Island. I figure there might be some help there.

Shakesbear
06-24-2010, 01:35 AM
Rating or officer? I think Nelson joined the navy when he was 11/12 years old and he started training as an officer so a biography about him may have some information. The National Maritme Museum may have some information.

TheIT
06-24-2010, 01:48 AM
Rating or officer? I think Nelson joined the navy when he was 11/12 years old and he started training as an officer so a biography about him may have some information. The National Maritme Museum may have some information.

The sailor would probably be considered an officer. It's a merchant ship so it wouldn't have the same military discipline as in a navy. I'm mainly looking for information about how ships functioned so I can pull what works for my universe. Nelson's a good lead, thanks.