The Greek Trireme

by Daniel Russ on October 22, 2013




The Trireme (Greek trieres) was the man powered war ship designed to be travel significant distances and ram and sink enemy ships. The Trireme also moved under sail power as needed, sometimes both.  


Each Greek naval vessel was 120 feet long and attended to by 170 rowers arranges in three tiers. The Trireme was narrow to reduce drag and other wise manned by archers and officers as well. Each rower had a seat covered in leather or wool. 31 rowers on the top tier, the 27 rowers in the middle tier and then another 27 on the bottom row. The Trireme could muster ten knots before ramming the enemy.


It was this naval technology that helped the Hellenic people rule the Eastern Mediterranean for centuries. It was this technology that the Roman naval reprised as well. During the Battle of Salamis, the Greeks used the bronze battering ram at the forward bow of the Trireme to ram Xerxes Persian Navy into the sea, and prevented another invasion from the north. 


Slaves were oarsmen and often just poor Greek citizens as well served for pay.







sources: Atomic Toasters, Flickr, wiki



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