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stepping stones of maritime history


The Hoop commenced her last long voyage on 15 December 1783, when it was sent back to the Cape. It arrived in Table Bay in the second half of April, but was found to be in a bad state and it came to light that the cargo had become damaged due to the intake of seawater and mechanical damage from sailing the rough seas. Some cargo was even missing, the value of which exceeded the VOC’s set limit of acceptable losses, the cost of which had to be borne by Captain Sijbrand Sax and the first officer.

Then, in the early morning of 8 June 1784, the ship was pushed into Table Bay by “strong currents and a heavy western swell” (Belder 2018: 16), positioning the vessel in between Robben Island and Lion’s Head. With the absence of wind, the vessel was pushed further and further towards the shore. Captain Sax ordered the dropping of three anchors, but all three anchors were lost, while the vessel had meanwhile already hit a rock on which one of the anchor ropes had snapped. The Hoop was then driven onto the rocks near Mouille Point and was smashed to pieces. All but one crewman managed to get off safely.


Length136.2 feet (41.5 m)
Tonnage800 ton (400 last)


  • Lesa la Grange, Martijn Manders, Briege Williams, John Gribble and Leon Derksen (2024).
    Dutch Shipwrecks in South African Waters: A Brief History of Sites, Stores and Archives [Unpublished].
  • Ketting, H. (2006).
    Fluitschepen voor de VOC : balanceren tussen oncostelijckheijt en duursaemheijt.

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