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History Fama was the flagship of the last great Admiral of the Venetian Republic Angelo Emo, who captained the ship during his continuous missions hunting down Barbary pirate including the siege of Tunis in 1785. Angelo Praised Fama for her considerable speed and agility naming the ship as comfortably the best Venice had. The plans for Fama were drawn up in 1782 and 6 ships were laid, of which 5 were completed she was constructed in the Venetian Arsenal by Giovanni Domenico Giacomazzi, who was considered the best venetian shipwright in of his time and built accordingly the "ad ordinata doppia" system which was implement in 1780 by Angelo Emo who after studying the construction techniques used by the English and the French, hoped to match them or even surpass them. Fama herself spent most of her career in active service, either stationed off of Corfu with the main detachment of the Venetian navy, ready to face threats from threats to the mouth of the Adriatic by the Ottomans or other hostile nations or spent hunting Pirates over the Mediterranean or Barbary Coast. Fama was captured alongside the rest of the Venetian fleet by Napoleon in 1797 when she was briefly renamed Renomee and then renamed again to Du Blois a month later. After her capture she was sailed to Tulon where she was rearmed with slightly smaller guns to fit French standards to take part in Napoleon's Egyptian expedition where she unfortunately collided with the French flagship "L'Orient", suffering severe damage. Despite her damage she remained to Alexandria and was used as headquarters by General Kleber was later partially sunk to block the entrance into Alexandria, she was then captured by the British and sadly broken up without the French, nor British ever realising her potential as a swift and powerful shock ship or as a strong commerce escort and pirate hunter. The Fama Class were given heavy armaments to match larger capital ships but maintaining the speed, versatility and agility of a frigate, thus the name Fregata Grossa came about, translating to Large Frigate, The ideas behind the Fregata Grossa rated ships were to hit hard and fast, able to set combat to their own advantage the theory was a cross between their contemporary super frigates and modern battlecruisers. They also contain similar thoughts used in the huge super frigates of the later 19th century but obviously without the steam engines to power them. The 6 Ships of the Fama Class were: Fama (1784) Gloria Veneta (1794) Le Stengel (1797) Le Beyrand (1797) Diamante (1797) Unnamed (uncompleted) Fama and Gloria Veneta both served under the Venetian Republic with considerable distinction. The other ships of the class were completed during the French and Austrian Occupation periods. Le Stengal and Beyrand both served briefly in the Napoleonic fleet and were then transferred to Austria as part of the peace deal. Diamante was badly damaged during the French Looting period and was patched up but sailed poorly, to deal with this she was armed from head to toe with 24lb guns and used as a floating battery, later she was repaired and served in the Austrian navy as a troop transport ship. A further Unnamed ship of the class was laid but damaged beyond salvation and was sadly broken up with parts being used to outfit other ships but mostly used as firewood. Fama well represents the Venetian Naval doctrine of the time, Venice continuing to fight with a hybrid fleet of Galeass, Galleys and Frigates, due to the history and nature of what remained of the Venetian Empire. Her outfitting, speed and manoeuvrability made her a great shock ship with a strong punch, able to hunt down pirates and operate well in shallow waters and archipelagos with complex coastlines. She is also incredibly well suited for the calm waters of the Mediterranean and able to produce good speed no matter the wind conditions. She was praised for her sailworthiness by her captains and considered the jewel in the late Venetian Fleet. Details Fama was considered a Secondo Rango Fregata Grossa within the Venetian Fleet, then after she was captured by the French she was reclassified as a 3rd rate, although if she were in the game she would likely be similarly placed as Agamemnon, among the 4th rates. Her measurements are (peidi are the Venetian feet): Total Length: 138 piedi or 48.00 meters Keel: 122 piedi or 42.42 meters Width: 37 piedi or 12.86 meters Draft: 17.5 piedi or 6.08 meters (when under French service: 16 fore, 18ft aft (5.2-5.85m)) Bilge Tip (height between the keel and deck): 28 piedi or 9.73m She was crewed by around 450-500 men, depending on how many sailors Venice could muster at the time. The Venetian state had a continuous issue with raising the appropriate number of men to serve on her navies during the later years of the republic. Fama had similar crew numbers to her contemporary 64s by other navies, however due to her smaller size these men served in even more cramp conditions than was generally experienced by the worlds navies, her officers quarters were equally as confined, especially considering that she was used for most of her career as an admiral's flagship, although these close natured lodgings were something the Venetians were always used to back at home in Venice. She sailed incredibly well and was praised for being hugely fast and agile, giving her the best ability to perform her main tasks, protecting merchant shipping and hunting down pirates. Her performance under sail is fairly well documented, receiving universal commendation from the officers who sailed her. I have not yet found any information about how she heeled, rolled and other similar specifics, as Venice had no sailing queries similar to the Royal Navy. Armaments Fama Carried 66 Guns, and her four chasers, below is a make up of weight and armaments during both the French and Venetian outfitting. She also had the potential to point the two cannons nearest the bow on the main gun deck in a forwards direction to aid the 2 dedicated chase guns situated either side of the foremast and 2 rear facing guns. During Venetian period by Venetian Weight 26 x 40lb (26.5 British pounds) (12.04 kg) 26 x 30lb (20 British pounds) (9.03 kg) 14 x 14lb (9 British pounds) (4.21 kg) 2x 14lb (9 British lb) Bow Chasers (4.21 kg) 2x 14lb (9 British lb) Stern Chasers (4.21 kg) Broadside Weight = 1008 Venetian Pounds (667.5 British Pounds) (303.4 kg) French Period By French Weight (reduced to a 64) 26 x 24lb (11.74 kg) 26 x 18lb (8.8 kg) 12 x 6lb (2.93 kg) 2 x 6lb Bow Chasers (2.93 kg) 2 x 6lb Stern Chasers (2.93 kg) Broadside Weight = 588 French Pound (634.75 British Pounds) (287.5kg) Plans The most true plans, showing the proper lines of of either La Fama or Gloria Veneta, as said below in a post stating the edit history of this thread. This is the only record showing the proper 66 broadside gun ports, although the plan below does miss her bow chasers. The other plans like with her sister ship Stengel show the correct lines, but sadly show incorrect positioning for the guns on the quarterdeck, the other plans show only 6 guns either side (12 in total) from when she was reduced to a 64 rather than the true build when she had 7 (14), which are shown correctly here. This is a modern reproduction by Guido Ercole, there are a couple of minor mistakes where she is shown having 28 guns, not her proper 26 on both her gun decks, she is also missing a gun on her weather deck. The rest of the reproduction is still accurate, with the sail plan and also shows a nice idea of what she would have looked like painted. Some less detailed plans, most likely showing Stengel, after she has one of her weather deck gun ports removed making her into a 64. Rough Planking and Framing Methods used Art Many Thanks go to Sella22 for letting me use some of his resources, I would really love to see this ship in the game, she would be a fantastic addition. Thank you for Reading.
A lot has been said about the greatest docks and shipyards in history, from the ancient shipyards of Athens, Carthage and Rome to the more modern sites of Britain, Spain, France and the Netherlands but none of these has changed the world quite as significantly as the Venetian arsenal. The Venetian Arsenal, first started as a small project of the Venetian state in 1104. Its purpose was to cheaply and efficiently service the state owned Galleys used to protect the interests of Venice's key source of income through trade. The Arsenal grew with the republic to not just become the worlds most impressive shipyard but in general largest industrial complex too. Its importance is paramount to the history of the world and has had a greater effect on your life than you would likely realise. While Venice had a huge amount of shipyards, and was known in its early history For supplying the Crusaders with ships, due to its unique position and ability of craftsmen none even came close to the power or prestige of the Arsenal. During the height of the Arsenal in the 1550s-60s the Shipyard had over 16,000 employees, with over 1200 master shipwrights, 1000 master caulkers and around 100 master oarmakers. Other crafts included foundry workers, sail makers and rope spinners that you would associate with any shipyard. The cost to Venice of the Arsenal during this period was over 150,000 ducats a year, to put this into perspective the Venetians paid around 200,000 ducats for the purchase of the island of Corfu. Resources were drawn for the running of the Arsenal from all over Venice, with timbers being drawn mostly from the woodlands owned by the Facility in the Montello foothills in treviso, this woodland was for exclusive use for the Arsenal. The Arsenal played such an important part of Venetian life time was kept to the clocks of the Arsenal and it took up about 15% the total land space of Venice and being in one of the positions of power with sway in the Arsenal was one of the most prestigious political jobs you could get, especially to become one of the Lords of the Arsenal. The construction of the Arsenal started in 1104 and for a time it remained a small enterprise of the Venetian state. The initial functions were to make a small income for the state and secure the Venetian mercantile fleet a reliable place to come and have repairs done, the owners of the ships would then be able to do what they do best and venture into the world to trade. The original Arsenal saw its first expansion in the 1200s, then for a Further 200 years The arsenal Expanded larger and larger to meet the demands of the Republic, In all there were numerous updating programs and 6 major upgrades during the time of the republic, in response to scale, scope and technological needs. The Main expansions were Formation of the Arsenal Vecchio around 1224-1304, Then in 1304-1322 the main rope manufactury was constructed. In 1325 the first huge expansion happened, the construction of the Arsenal Nuovo, this was the project that lead the Arsenal to really become the powerhouse we see historically, the complex almost tripled in size over the space of a year, bringing huge importance to the Arsenal and making it the largest state enterprise of Venice. The formation of the Arsenal Nuovo was of such significance that the next major upgrade wasn't constructed for over 100 years, when they began work on the section that became known as The Arsenal Nuovoissima, which added another section increasing the complex to twice what it was before, the main need for this expansion was to deal with the increased threat of the growing Ottoman empire, following the fall of Constantinople 20 years previous. The Arsenal then saw the building of a row of sheds splitting off the Arsenal Nuovo and Nuovissima around 1508. The last major upgrades happened in 1535-40 with the expansion of the specialist area specifically designed for constructing Galleass, with the last expansion being in 1620 as part of the continual modernisation process through the 1600s bringing it up to speed with modern technology. The full list of expansions are available here: http://arsenalofvenice.weebly.com/history-of-the-arsenale.html Thanks to the continual investment, improvements and concentration of resources the Arsenal prospered with the Venetian Lagoon allowing the Arsenal to be built in a safe place, away from the potential raids by both land and sea which left it in a rather unique place to expand to its potential away from harm, unlike most of the Venetian shipyards situated on the island of Lido. To amalgamate this geographical safety advantage the Venetian Government completely encircled the Arsenal, safe from any possible aggressive force, and also securely tucked away from prying eyes and spies. The Arsenal became such a huge part of Naval dominance it was copied by Venice's greatest rivals, first the Arsenal at Genoa was constructed, then the Ottomans constructed their own version on the coast of Gallipoli neither of which really managed the same level of prestige that can be attributed to the Arsenal of Venice. The Arsenal was even mentioned in Dante's inferno. The Arsenal was set up in a system that used dry and wet sheds to ultimately construct multiple vessels at a time at its height The Arsenal was allegedly able to construct a ship a day, but this is largely due to the way the Shipyard used interchangeable and standardised parts, which was one of the major technologies it gave the world, it was practising this method as early as the 1350s. The arsenal often contained the parts to fully construct between 100-200 ships at any time, although a large portion of these parts were kept as spares for existing ship maintenance. A more realistic estimate would be that during peak operations the Shipyard could produce a completely new ship from scratch in between 1-2 weeks. While other major shipyards like the ones in Chatham and Portsmouth would struggle to see a new ship sooner than 6 months, showing the staggering production capacity of the Arsenal. To put it into further context the peak production of the Arsenal in the 1550-60s wasn't ever reached in the pre industrial period and was only eclipsed by the great factories during the industrial revolution, with no shipyard on the planet meeting a higher output until 1909. When it comes to ships, the some of major contributions of the Arsenal include: The Light Galley of the 1350s The War Galley of 1486 The Galleon The Scaloccio of the 1500s. The Quinquereme resurrection in 1524 The Lepanto Galeass 1560s The Galleass of 1654 (The first scientifically designed ship of the modern period) The Galleass of 1690 San Lorenzo Zustinian Class 1690 Leon Trionfante Class 1716 The Ultimate Galleass 1724 The 1780 Fregata Grossa (The first real Battle Cruiser, Improved to form the Fama Class) Cerere Class (which then resulted in the 44 cannoni Class) The Galleass of 1654 is particularly important. The increased pressure from the Ottoman Empire forced Venice to start thinking more technologically to maintain its sea advantage against the much larger and more resourceful Turks. This pressure forced the Venetians into looking more scientifically at the developments of ships in the ancient world, most notably the Quinqueremes of Rome, Egypt and Carthage. This lead onto technical arrangements of rowing benches but also spurred investigations to lines and theories of ancient maritime warfare. This was combined with the new developments during the renaissance and contemporary sciences. This work was undertaken by some big names in Venetian Maritime history, the most well known of which is Galileo, who completed his apprenticeship in naval architecture in the closing stages of the 17th Century, Galileo maintained friendship and worked closely with his friends who later became prominent Lords of the Arsenal, together their work resulted in the Galeass of 1654, which was so groundbreaking the design wasn't really topped until the Ultimate Galleass of 1724. This work also laid the foundations for the French architects of the 18th century who continued where the Venetians left off, using the same methods to construct their Atlantic fleets, although Venetians still kept their huge advantage when it came to Galleys. While Venice constructed its first Atlantic style ship of the line in 1666 they were playing catch up, 24 years Later they Launched the San Lorenzo Zustinian, which was a return to form at the top table of naval design. After San Lorenzo Zustinian The Arsenal's lowered resources from the decline of the Venetian Empire started to show, while still significant in Galeass design the time of galleys had mostly passed and No significant designs really appeared until Angelo Emo's reforms which changed the focus of Venetian design to hard hitting shock ships, this resulted in a focus on two fairly open ratings of ships Fregata Grossa and Fregata Leggara, Fregata Leggara was filled with heavy corvettes, the largest of which was armed with 34 guns although The Fregata Grossa rating is potentially more interesting, started by the 1780 class but what really made it was the ship La Fama, Angelo Emo's flag ship. These ships were the fantastic swan songs of Venice they worked in a similar way as the frigates of 100 years later, and took the same combat role as the modern Battle Cruiser. A List of some of the other Advancements Venetian Arsenal gives us are: The Bombard Cannon Standardised Interchangeable Parts The Production Line The Basis for Modern Ballistics The Birth of Modern Science Social Security Division and specialisation of Labour A basis for modern trade The modern State Navy If anyone wants to know more I will gladly talk more, especially about specific details. Thank you for Reading