Fluyt (ETW unit)
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A Fluyt is a design for a square-rigged armed merchantman that is faster and handier than a galleon.
The ship is a good sailer, as befits a design coming from a seafaring nation like Holland.
Historically, the fluyt was originated by Dutch shipbuilders, and the type helped the Dutch to become a maritime trading nation in the 17th Century. Extensively used by the Dutch trading companies, it was soon adopted by other nations. The vessels were easy for a relatively small crew to handle, and could carry around a dozen cannon for self-defence, although these were sometimes left ashore so that even more cargo could be carried.
The fluyt had a distinctive “fat-bottomed” cross section. This was a cunning scheme to avoid taxes and tolls, as the Danish had a habit of charging tolls based on deck area for access to the straits between Denmark, Norway and Sweden. A small deck (the big cargo hold below counted for nothing) meant lower taxes! The Dutch had to pay these tolls if they wanted access to any of the lucrative Baltic trade.