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stepping stones of maritime history


The Maen may have been the same as the Nieuwe Maen, first mentioned by Jan Pietersz. Coen in 1618, in order to make a distinction between another, older vessel with the same name.

The Maen was sent on several voyages in the East. In 1622, when it was supposed to sail in the company of the Hondt from the Moluccas to Cabo Spirito Sancto and from there to the coasts of China. However, both the Hondt and the Maen never managed to get that far as the ships were leaking to such an extent that both had to make a stop at Hirado, Japan. While at their anchors in Kawachi bay, a few km south of the Dutch trading post at Hirado, the vessels met with a great storm, somewhere between the 9th and the 19th of September that same year. The Maen yet again sprung a leak while the Hondt seemed to have burst entirely (Cocks 1883, p.336; Savenije, n.d.). Both ships were condemned and scrapped at Kawachi (Mulder 1985, p.276).


Hirado is a small fishing village situated in the south west of Japan, in the north western part of Kyushu. In the year 1609 the Dutch had established a trading post in Hirado. The port of Hirado was the centre for foreign trade in Japan until Japan closed most of its borders for the outside world in 1641. All Portuguese merchants, Jesuits and their Japanese following were banned from the country, while only the Dutch and Chinese merchants were allowed to continue their trade with Japan through the port of Nagasaki, until Japan reopened its doors to the the outside world in 1853.


Type:Unknown, most likely a yacht.

Propulsion: Sails

Line: Vereenigdhe Oost-Indische Compagnia (VOC) or Dutch East India Company

A VOC yacht (Unrelated to the Maen. Painting by Jacob van Strij)

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