Length: 33" (85 cm)
Width: 12" (30 cm)
Height: 28" (70 cm)
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The Batavia was a ship of the Dutch East India Company (VOC). She was built in Amsterdam in 1628 and had 24 cast-iron cannons. Batavia was shipwrecked on her maiden voyage, and made famous by the subsequent mutiny and massacre that took place among the survivors. A twentieth-century replica of the ship is also called the Batavia and can be visited in Lelystad, the Netherlands.
On 29 October 1628, the newly built Batavia, commissioned by the Dutch East India Company, sailed from Texel for the Dutch East Indies, to obtain spices. It sailed under commandeer and
opperkoopman (upper- or senior merchant) Francisco Pelsaert, with Ariaen Jacobsz serving as skipper. Although some animosity had developed between them there, it is not known whether Pelsaert even remembered Jacobsz when he boarded Batavia. During the voyage, Jacobsz and Cornelisz conceived a plan to take the ship, which would allow them to start a new life somewhere, using the huge supply of trade gold and silver then on board. Jacobsz and Cornelisz had already gathered a small group of men around them and arranged an incident from which the mutiny was to ensue. This involved attacking a high-ranking young female passenger, Lucretia Jans, in order to provoke Pelsaert into disciplining the crew. However, the woman was able to identify her attackers. The mutineers were then forced to wait until Pelsaert made arrests, but he never acted.
On 4 June 1629, the ship struck a reef near Beacon Island part of the Houtman Abrolhos off the Western Australian coast. Of the 322 aboard, most of the passengers and crew managed to get ashore, although 40 people drowned. The survivors, including all the women and children, were then transferred to nearby islands in the ship's longboat and yawl.
Learn more about the Batavia ship replica and get tickets to visit it in the Netherlands.
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