Is it a ship ? Is it a car ?

Von_Turin

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I've lived near the sea for some years and one of the things I saw quite often when walking on the beach, was people practicing "Land Sailing".

Land_Sailing.jpg

Not so long ago I visited a guy who has a large collection of old maps and drawings, perhaps you can guess my surprise when one of the old drawings he showed was this one :

1280px-Simon_Stevins_zeilwagen_voor_Prins_Maurits_1649.jpg

Picture source

Willem_Isaacsz._van_Swanenburg_-_The_Land_Yacht_-_WGA21989.jpg

Picture source

Who was responsible for this ?
Around 1600 Flemish engineer Simon Stevin designed and built two land sailing yaughts for Prince of Orange Maurice Nassau which are shown in the above mentioned drawings.

Here's another drawing from the 17th century :

Album_amicorum_of_Michael_van_Meer_004.jpg

Source

All though I'd never seen such early "Land Sailing" boats / wagons before, and was amazed that they already had this in 1600...

I was satisfied with the explanation that Simon Stevin did this. A person with great standing in our history of engineering. This kind of knowledge / thinking wasn't out of place in regards to the era for me.

I would suppose more enlightened Medieval engineers (or smart normal people) around the world would be thinking of such and other nice early mechanical contraptions.

1860 Kansas Wind Wagons.

So I decided to look into the history of "Land Sailing" and guess what ?

The Chinese beat us to the punch... according to Wiki quite a long time ago already :
  • The earliest text describing the Chinese use of mounting masts and sails on large vehicles is the Book of the Golden Hall Master written by the Daoist scholar and crown prince Xiao Yi, who later became Emperor Yuan of Liang (r. 552–554 AD). He wrote that Gaocang Wushu invented a "wind-driven carriage" which was able to carry thirty people at once. There was another built in about 610 for the Emperor Yang of Sui (r. 604–617), as described in the Continuation of the New Discourses on the Talk of the Times.
  • European travelers from the 16th century onwards mentioned sailing carriages with surprise. In 1585 (during the Chinese Ming Dynasty), Gonzales de Mendoza wrote that the Chinese had many coaches and wagons mounted with sails, and even depicted them in artwork of silk hanfu robes and on earthenware vessels.
  • In the 1584 atlas Theatrum Orbis Terrarum written by the cartographer Abraham Ortelius (1527–1598), there are large Chinese carriages depicted with sails and masts. Likewise, there are the same Chinese vehicles with sails depicted in the Atlas of Gerardus Mercator (1512–1594), as well as the 1626 book Kingdome of China by John Speed. The English poet John Milton (1608–1674) popularized the Chinese sailing carriage in Europe with a poem written in 1665.
1280px-CEM-11-Chinae-nova-descriptio-2521.jpg

Von Thurin : So this means that the Chinese have been using sailing wagons for almost 2000 years !!! Awh men, this means hours of looking on the internet for old Chinese depictions of sailing wagons.

I haven't found any "ancient Roman" sailing wagons up to now but if anyone does please share :)
 
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Von_Turin

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If these kids put roller skates on, bingo!
I had a good laugh with your "roller skates" comment :)

But all jokes aside : Your picture reminded me seeing these Chinese semi-wind-driven wheel barrows earlier in my life but forgetting about them until you mention them again now.

And now that I'm reading into them I actually learned today something new for me : how efficient they actually worked / work (the design of the wheelbarrow itself b.t.w).

So Chinese wind driven wheel barrows... check...

Another engraving of "Wind Chariots" that can somewhat be connected to China that I can find at the moment is this one :

Sailing_Carts.JPG

From this 1631 map by John Speed.

Seems like they're having a nice ride !

Chinese sedan, engraving by Theodor de Bry (1528-1598) from 1598 German edition of "Ander Theil der Orientalischen Indien" the "Indiae Orientalis" by Theodor and his sons Johann Theodor de Bry (1561–1623) and Johann Israel de Bry (1565–1609). The book sets out the travels of Jan Huygen van Linschoten.

Sailing_Vehicle.JPG

And perhaps we have something interesting !

Juan Caramuel y Lobkowitz, Mathesis biceps, vetus et nova, Campaniae/Lyon 1670, p. 646, with figure:

Primi, qui velis, coeperunt currus vehere fuerunt Tartari, qui borealiorem Asiae partem habitant: apud quos est longa, & aperta planities, quam traiiciunt curribus, quos nulli equi, aut rengiferi trahunt, sed venti promovent.

I'm going of the Dutch translation :

The first who begun using carts driven with sails where the Tartarians who occupied the northern part of Asia. They have a long and open plain (s) where they use wagons not pulled by animals but put in motion by means of wind.

Von Thurin : Those Tartarians again...
 
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KorbenDallas

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I haven't found any "ancient Roman" sailing wagons up to now but if anyone does please share
Well, if Ancient Rome and the times of the Holy Roman Empire are the same time period split into two, you probably won't. If these sail-cars did not get mentioned during the rewriting process, they won't be there.
  • We have not quite made it to dismantling the "Ancient China" legend, but its time will come. When were the lowest copies of the below Chinese books talking about land-sailing located/discovered? I will bet on some time after 1400s.
    • Book of the Golden Hall Master
    • Continuation of the New Discourses on the Talk of the Times
  • My 3 cents: these things started getting used after some event preceding the 15th century.
Most Important:
  • Apart from picture #1 of the OP, where a compact sandy beach is being used, or some salt flats, or rare flats in general, what do we need for these things to work?
  • I bet if things went to hell, I could ride one of these on the prior achievements only. Where else could I?
  • Aren't these wind propelled vehicles useless without roads? Yet, they clearly used these land sailing cars.
road_1.jpg

Apparently French thought it was some new sports thing. They called them cars Aeroplages.

aeroplages.jpg

aeroplague2.jpg


Would that work???
rail sailing.jpg

KD: And for the forum purposes we are gonna call it a "car" and move into the Cars, Bikes and Trains category.
 

jd755

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Wind assist wheelbarrows. Pretty sure they are human driven!
As wooden ships were being replaced by steam and iron they still carried masts and sails, just in case, or so the photographic record shows. Other than land yachts which race across sand flats/beaches I've never seen anything on land wholly powered along by wind.
 

HollyHoly

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I want a sailing wagon!! this looks like fun ! also what happened ?why don't we have great stuff like this anymore?
 

Dielectric

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Wind Wagons seem like a cool idea but are just too impractical to be successful, but what they make me think of is why not just go with a hot air balloon? You have to wonder why no groups used balloons to travel west. There's an old saying that goes; There are those that pack light and those who wish they had. Seems like you could have had a whole bunch of balloonists instead of wagon trains and be better off.
 
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Von_Turin

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I want a sailing wagon!! this looks like fun !
Well, the smaller sailings carts / buggies are still optional :) but I'm not sure if you've live somewhere near the sea or a flat area where this is practiced.

Perhaps the below mentioned sport is an option when you live near a lake that freezes during the winter (that is if things freeze in your area) ?

Ice_Yaughting_01.jpg

Source

Adriaen_Pietersz_Der_Winter.JPG

Wiki Source : Ice Yaghting

why don't we have great stuff like this anymore?
It's a little bit of track but I just had to include these marvels of "simple" workmanship with a whole lot understanding of engineering / mechanics and such.

Behold the "Wind Driven Beach Beasts" by Theo Jansen made largely out of PVC pipes and tyraps ! If you aren't familiar with the works of this guy I'll post a youtube link below this picture.

Not all of his creations are a success but you'll have to give this man credit. Imagine walking on the beach and this thing comes out of nowhere ?

Strandbeest_01.JPG


Strandbeest evolution 2017 by Theo Jansen (which is also his channel if you want to see other videos or his backstory).

Wind assist wheelbarrows. Pretty sure they are human driven!
As wooden ships were being replaced by steam and iron they still carried masts and sails, just in case, or so the photographic record shows. Other than land yachts which race across sand flats/beaches I've never seen anything on land wholly powered along by wind.
I would also tend to think these wheelbarrows to be mainly human-powered but perhaps "the sail" is a multi-tool ( could be used sometimes for shade and other purposes ? ) which sometimes could come in handy when you were lucky to have the wind in your back ?

Wind Wagons seem like a cool idea but are just too impractical to be successful, but what they make me think of is why not just go with a hot air balloon? You have to wonder why no groups used balloons to travel west. There's an old saying that goes; There are those that pack light and those who wish they had. Seems like you could have had a whole bunch of balloonists instead of wagon trains and be better off.
I agree, Wind Chariots were and are just to impractical and that's what I'm also finding in studies about the Simon Stevin Sail-wagon.

A small proto type was built, then a somewhat larger sail wagon to show off. Quite some prominent people hitched a ride or were on the guest-list and got quite the attention but then faded into history.

It also helps when fellow forum members start asking critical though questions :)

* These larger wagons / carts need to have a somewhat compact underground with not to many holes in it and if possible level for miles, not to many hills and bumps ;
* This calls for a somewhat "decent" infrastructure of roads ;​
* A higher speed means more friction and heat ! Aren't that some disadvantages when it comes to a cart largely made of wood ? ;
* It's possible for heavier vehicles to ride on the beach under certain circumstances and when equipped for this sandy environment ;
army_vehicles_beach.jpg
* What to do when there isn't any wind ? ;
* What to do when you've got the wind against you and this is an important one ? This means constant navigating in a zig-zag formation which means more needed space for the sail-wagons to go against the wind =>​
800px-Kreuzen_Segeln_TK.png

Interesting proposal about the hot air balloons as means of (cargo) transportation you've got there !

The sail-wagon in the end wasn't interesting enough it was concluded for The Dutch Republic that was and still is famous for its.... windmills... That says a lot ;)

1920px-Overview_windmills_Kinderdijk.jpg

Source

* KD: And for the forum purposes we are gonna call it a "car" and move into the Cars, Bikes and Trains category.
Your totally right, not sure where I was with my head.

I very much appreciate the adjustments to the OP for making it more digestible and making it look better in terms of the format ! I'm a noob with these kind of things but I'll take notes on how the format of a thread should look like.

I was probably just as amazed as others when I saw this whole Kansas sail-railway stuff but it seemed to be a working thing back then for smaller carts.

Not sure how and if larger / heavier carts could make it solely powered by wind.

Thinking about those and other pictures reminds me of proposals I've seen in other threads that certain Out of Place Objects are "left-over" technologies and we don't have a clue what to do with them or lost the original means of charging these vehicles.

While browsing I found this operational Sail Railway in Brazil... I really feel like banging my head on the wall for being so backward it seems.

Sail_on_Rail.jpg


Well, if Ancient Rome and the times of the Holy Roman Empire are the same time period split into two, you probably won't. If these sail-cars did not get mentioned during the rewriting process, they won't be there.
  • We have not quite made it to dismantling the "Ancient China" legend, but its time will come. When were the lowest copies of the below Chinese books talking about land-sailing located/discovered? I will bet on some time after 1400s.
    • Book of the Golden Hall Master
    • Continuation of the New Discourses on the Talk of the Times
  • My 3 cents: these things started getting used after some event preceding the 15th century.
I'm also putting in three Euro's but I'm for sure ain't betting against you, my thoughts exactly !
 

Dielectric

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Humans are really creative when their minds aren't guided in to dead ends. I really hadn't thought of balloons but your sail wagons made me consider them as being at least as feasible in the period of Westward expansion, because balloons had by then been around for a while, so why then if people considered sail powered wagons didn't they try balloons? I mean seriously how much more impractical would that have been than sail powered wagons, or even a conventional wagon?

I forgot one big problem with my balloon theory that I just remembered. The prevailing wind is west to east so wrong way. That's why the Japanese were able to send balloon bombs across the Pacific Ocean.
 
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HollyHoly

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Humans are really creative when their minds aren't guided in to dead ends. I really hadn't thought of balloons but your sail wagons made me consider them as being at least as feasible in the period of Westward expansion, because balloons had by then been around for a while, so why then if people considered sail powered wagons didn't they try balloons? I mean seriously how much more impractical would that have been than sail powered wagons, or even a conventional wagon?

I forgot one big problem with my balloon theory that I just remembered. The prevailing wind is west to east so wrong way. That's why the Japanese were able to send balloon bombs across the Pacific Ocean.
Well, the smaller sailings carts / buggies are still optional :) but I'm not sure if you've live somewhere near the sea or a flat area where this is practiced.

Perhaps the below mentioned sport is an option when you live near a lake that freezes during the winter (that is if things freeze in your area) ?

View attachment 29909
Source

View attachment 29910
Wiki Source : Ice Yaghting



It's a little bit of track but I just had to include these marvels of "simple" workmanship with a whole lot understanding of engineering / mechanics and such.

Behold the "Wind Driven Beach Beasts" by Theo Jansen made largely out of PVC pipes and tyraps ! If you aren't familiar with the works of this guy I'll post a youtube link below this picture.

Not all of his creations are a success but you'll have to give this man credit. Imagine walking on the beach and this thing comes out of nowhere ?

View attachment 29907

Strandbeest evolution 2017 by Theo Jansen (which is also his channel if you want to see other videos or his backstory).



I would also tend to think these wheelbarrows to be mainly human-powered but perhaps "the sail" is a multi-tool ( could be used sometimes for shade and other purposes ? ) which sometimes could come in handy when you were lucky to have the wind in your back ?



I agree, Wind Chariots were and are just to impractical and that's what I'm also finding in studies about the Simon Stevin Sail-wagon.

A small proto type was built, then a somewhat larger sail wagon to show off. Quite some prominent people hitched a ride or were on the guest-list and got quite the attention but then faded into history.

It also helps when fellow forum members start asking critical though questions :)

* These larger wagons / carts need to have a somewhat compact underground with not to many holes in it and if possible level for miles, not to many hills and bumps ;
* This calls for a somewhat "decent" infrastructure of roads ;​
* A higher speed means more friction and heat ! Aren't that some disadvantages when it comes to a cart largely made of wood ? ;
* It's possible for heavier vehicles to ride on the beach under certain circumstances and when equipped for this sandy environment ;
* What to do when there isn't any wind ? ;
* What to do when you've got the wind against you and this is an important one ? This means constant navigating in a zig-zag formation which means more needed space for the sail-wagons to go against the wind =>​

Interesting proposal about the hot air balloons as means of (cargo) transportation you've got there !

The sail-wagon in the end wasn't interesting enough it was concluded for The Dutch Republic that was and still is famous for its.... windmills... That says a lot ;)

View attachment 29908
Source

* KD: And for the forum purposes we are gonna call it a "car" and move into the Cars, Bikes and Trains category.
Your totally right, not sure where I was with my head.

I very much appreciate the adjustments to the OP for making it more digestible and making it look better in terms of the format ! I'm a noob with these kind of things but I'll take notes on how the format of a thread should look like.



I was probably just as amazed as others when I saw this whole Kansas sail-railway stuff but it seemed to be a working thing back then for smaller carts.

Not sure how and if larger / heavier carts could make it solely powered by wind.

Thinking about those and other pictures reminds me of proposals I've seen in other threads that certain Out of Place Objects are "left-over" technologies and we don't have a clue what to do with them or lost the original means of charging these vehicles.

While browsing I found this operational Sail Railway in Brazil... I really feel like banging my head on the wall for being so backward it seems.

View attachment 29911



I'm also putting in three Euro's but I'm for sure ain't betting against you, my thoughts exactly !
Well, the smaller sailings carts / buggies are still optional :) but I'm not sure if you've live somewhere near the sea or a flat area where this is practiced.

Perhaps the below mentioned sport is an option when you live near a lake that freezes during the winter (that is if things freeze in your area) ?

View attachment 29909
Source

View attachment 29910
Wiki Source : Ice Yaghting



It's a little bit of track but I just had to include these marvels of "simple" workmanship with a whole lot understanding of engineering / mechanics and such.

Behold the "Wind Driven Beach Beasts" by Theo Jansen made largely out of PVC pipes and tyraps ! If you aren't familiar with the works of this guy I'll post a youtube link below this picture.

Not all of his creations are a success but you'll have to give this man credit. Imagine walking on the beach and this thing comes out of nowhere ?

View attachment 29907

Strandbeest evolution 2017 by Theo Jansen (which is also his channel if you want to see other videos or his backstory).



I would also tend to think these wheelbarrows to be mainly human-powered but perhaps "the sail" is a multi-tool ( could be used sometimes for shade and other purposes ? ) which sometimes could come in handy when you were lucky to have the wind in your back ?



I agree, Wind Chariots were and are just to impractical and that's what I'm also finding in studies about the Simon Stevin Sail-wagon.

A small proto type was built, then a somewhat larger sail wagon to show off. Quite some prominent people hitched a ride or were on the guest-list and got quite the attention but then faded into history.

It also helps when fellow forum members start asking critical though questions :)

* These larger wagons / carts need to have a somewhat compact underground with not to many holes in it and if possible level for miles, not to many hills and bumps ;
* This calls for a somewhat "decent" infrastructure of roads ;​
* A higher speed means more friction and heat ! Aren't that some disadvantages when it comes to a cart largely made of wood ? ;
* It's possible for heavier vehicles to ride on the beach under certain circumstances and when equipped for this sandy environment ;
* What to do when there isn't any wind ? ;
* What to do when you've got the wind against you and this is an important one ? This means constant navigating in a zig-zag formation which means more needed space for the sail-wagons to go against the wind =>​

Interesting proposal about the hot air balloons as means of (cargo) transportation you've got there !

The sail-wagon in the end wasn't interesting enough it was concluded for The Dutch Republic that was and still is famous for its.... windmills... That says a lot ;)

View attachment 29908
Source

* KD: And for the forum purposes we are gonna call it a "car" and move into the Cars, Bikes and Trains category.
Your totally right, not sure where I was with my head.

I very much appreciate the adjustments to the OP for making it more digestible and making it look better in terms of the format ! I'm a noob with these kind of things but I'll take notes on how the format of a thread should look like.



I was probably just as amazed as others when I saw this whole Kansas sail-railway stuff but it seemed to be a working thing back then for smaller carts.

Not sure how and if larger / heavier carts could make it solely powered by wind.

Thinking about those and other pictures reminds me of proposals I've seen in other threads that certain Out of Place Objects are "left-over" technologies and we don't have a clue what to do with them or lost the original means of charging these vehicles.

While browsing I found this operational Sail Railway in Brazil... I really feel like banging my head on the wall for being so backward it seems.

View attachment 29911



I'm also putting in three Euro's but I'm for sure ain't betting against you, my thoughts exactly !
when I was a little kid we used to get a parachute and on windy days we went to this big field and let the chute fill up with wind and it would drag us kids all over that field. I was crazy fun, that's what these vehicles remind me of!!:LOL::LOL:
 
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Von_Turin

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Found a curious piece of text in the publication "The Harleian Miscellany : A collection of scarce, curious.... vol. 3" publication date 1744-1746.

The book is about the "Great Fire of London in 1666" but in it an eyewitness account is quoted from the "Fire of Moscow in 1571" as to show how devastating these fires were for the big cities London and Moscow (like countless other cities and area's for that matter).

Urban Fire verdict: global attack on our civilization or incompetency?

So let's assume the eyewitness account is real, as it's date somewhere end 16th century than we have this strange text :

* The Tartarians come so easily, from so far to invade the Russians ;​
* They also have that craft... :unsure: ;
* Which they only come in the summer... :unsure: ;
* For the convenience of their horses... :unsure: ;
Screenshot :
Capture.JPG
What kind of craft(s) could that have been in which they only came during the summer, and was convenient for their horses ?

Edit :

* My first thought (like everybody else) would be a ship perhaps ?
* Makes sense because in the winter the rivers aren't frozen ?
* But then how many ships would you need to transport this massive army (if the numbers would be "accurate") ?
* And wouldn't they just call it a "ship" or a "boat" ?

* Funky war wagon chariots perhaps ?

It took a while but I found one of the sources on which Dutch engineer Simon Stevin designed and built the Land Sailing Wagon.

It comes from a 1596 book "Itineraio" by Jan Huygen van Linschoten who visited and stayed in Asia. Not everything that is described in this book is a firsthand witness account, but this book is very accurate in terms of things (ocean routes/depths etc. which would be used by the Dutch for trade) being mentioned in it.

This is the old Dutch fragment :

* Die Chinen zijn groote kon- des hemels. stenaren,
* ende seer vernuftigh, alsmen sien mach aen alle die wer- cken die daer van daen comen ;
* Zy maken ende ghebruijeken karren Kerren met met seylen, in maniere van Schuyten,
* met wielen, met sulcken sub- ^n* wint°° r tijlheyt,
* datse met de wint op een vlack velt voort gaen en ghedreven *
* er velt worden al oftse in 'twater waren ;

What I can make of it (not a pro in old Dutch) :

* The Chinese are great heavenly artists ;
* And quite ingenious as can be seen by all the works that come there off ;
* The make use of carts with sails in manner of barges ;
* With weels with such.... ? ? ;
* That they with the wind on a level field are being driven ;
* As if they where already in the water ;
 
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jd755

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"Have that craft" means to me "they are crafty", in modern parlance.
a begrudging way of saying' they aren't stupid enough to carry food for their horses, unlike us.'
 
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Von_Turin

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"Have that craft" means to me "they are crafty", in modern parlance.
a begrudging way of saying' they aren't stupid enough to carry food for their horses, unlike us.'
My good Sir,

I've got to admit that this would be a very good, logical and highly plausible interpretation of what actually is being written instead of me thinking about some kind of land-sailing craft.

All though we do explore some "bizarre" theories on this forum, critical thinking mustn't be excluded.

So I went in search of the Dutch account of this 1571 fire but the only thing I can come up with at the moment are 1834-1836 books (Dutch).

In the 1834-1836 books I'm missing the whole section about "the craftiness of the Tartars and convenience for the horses" in the place where it should be.

Most logical option would be that the English publishers in the 17th century took some liberties while copying the 1571 witness account and describing the Tartars.

I've got to hold my horses now with the above text but still there are accounts of medieval Europeans seeing / hearing about sailing carts in the China / Tartaria - region end of the 16th century.

An European engineer builds one around 1600... it actually a working concept with the right conditions to a certain degree.

All though "ancient" and medieval engineers / scientist were quite intelligent and did experiments with windpower I can't find any mentioning that Da Vinci for example had idea's for a sailing car.

It could have been very obvious for great minds like him and the "ancient Greek philosophers) to put a sail on a cart and see what happens ?

Next week let's see if I can find any medieval Chinese depictions of Landsailing carts / wagons / buggies, crossing my fingers ;)
 

KorbenDallas

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Of course ancient roads were historically assigned to the Romans, but this part is expected. It appears that after the terrain changing catastrophe, the world lost many of their technological achievements. Things probably looked like our Mad Max movie to a degree. Just imagining our sailing carriages on something like this is a crazy interesting hypothesis. (there are tons more in the Google Ngram)

 
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