Good one, Pirog!Actually the painting shows "The Dauphin taking over the rudder of the ship of the state", the ship being oared by strength, faith, justice and prudence.
But it inspired me to create my own version:
It was because of these reasons that the mortality rate on the galleys was outrageous. It does not matter from the gender of the rowers. And very often the sentence "to the oar" was a substitute for the death penalty.Ok, so... with a new day, comes a new topic (at least here in Eastern Europe it's a new day).
That being said... what about the healthcare of the galley slave girls? Let's take in consideration a few problems:
1. All that sweating combined with living naked or almost naked in a cold environment can only mean getting sick from time to time. Imagine a girl with pneumonia, barely able to breath, trying to push the oars, trying so hard not to suffocate, while her lungs are burning and her throat is sore. At the same time, she has fever, her whole body burning. It's hell on Earth for her, but she still has to push forward, although each time she pulls or pushes the oar, she feels like a burning coal.
2. Considering they rarely (or probably never) get access to fruits, scurvy can really become a serious problem. Bleeding, weakness and teeth falling. Again, another reason why I consider that some fruits wouldn't cause any harm... after all we need the girls to be at least somewhat healthy, so they can row more.
3. On the same topic, no dentistry on the ship can also mean that the girls are also dealing with tooth decay. Caries and foul smelling mouths. The only dentistry they'll get is getting their decayed teeth removed with clippers or even by brute force. Then again, there's the classic method of tying their tooth to the knob of the door with some floss then slam the door.
4. Infections caused by flogging or cuts are something really worth looking into, because an infection that gets too severe, may force you to amputate a girl's limb, and that would seriously reduce her productivity, rendering her almost useless.
5. Rats, fleas and lice are another concern. Rats can only help spreading the disease, and they may even bite the girls at night. Lice and fleas can become another burden to bear. It's much harder to row when you just want to scratch your head every few seconds.
6. Considering the humidity of the environment, mold is just another concern. The girls, being forced to breath moldy air, are only damaging their lungs with time.
Of course, the list can go on and on, so I'd like to hear your point of view on this matter.
Galleys were not suited for long ocean voyages, and mostly were used in interior seas, and operations within short reach of ports. With a good onland stock of slaves, these health problems could be overcome. By the way, the slaves were the 'engine' of the ship, and it is essential that an engine needs good maintenance to enhance its performance. With the rowing benches full of ill slaves, making 'ramming speed" would be problematic.It was because of these reasons that the mortality rate on the galleys was outrageous. It does not matter from the gender of the rowers. And very often the sentence "to the oar" was a substitute for the death penalty.
She said she would rather work as a man than spread her legs for hundreds of them - well, actually she said it a fair bit more colourfully, with some dire threats towards any potential "customers". With some owners such insolence would have invited torture or worse, but her's was amused enough to give her a shot at the oars, if she wanted a man's job so much. He even let her keep her insolent tounge - for now.
I believe that most of these have appeared earlier in this thread....but its nice to see such classic images of suffering and degradation, again....
Just a tad on the muscular side for my liking but still awesome. Is vulchur still alive and kicking?