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stepping stones of maritime history


The Neptunis (Neptunus) was lost during the Battle of the Gabbard bank that took place on 12-13 June 1653 (First Anglo-Dutch War).

After the defeat in the Three-day Battle of the Sea in February 1653, the Dutch were driven out of the Channel. The Dutch had no answer to the new line tactics of the English fleet. Who positioned their ships in 1 closed line and made optimum use of their much greater firepower from a distance. The smaller and poorly armed ships of the Dutch were shattered without being able to get closer. Better seamanship did not outweigh brutal firepower.

The North Sea was the lifeline of the Republic and had to be kept open at all costs. So despite the realization on the Dutch side that the power relationship was to the disadvantage of the Republic, the English fleet had to be attacked again. The battle ended in one of the toughest maritime defeats in Dutch history. Despite the fact that all three major naval heroes from Dutch history participated in this battle, Witte de With, MaartenTromp and Michiel de Ruyter. Six Dutch ships sank and 12 ships were taken. The English did not lose one ship.


Type: Ship of the line
Owner: Admiralty Zeeland
Length: 120 ft
Complement: 130
Master: Jan Pouwelszoon (1652), rear admiral Adriaan Jansz den Oven (1653)
Armament: 28

People on board134
Length120 feet (36.6 m)


Down on 9 December

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13 Provinces