A Pentaconter of Sparta, Peloponnesian War (5th century BC).
The Pentecontore, or Pentacontère, must not be confused with the "pentere", not a usual contraction, but the Greek designation of the Roman quinqueremes. This galley was a logical evolution of the Triacontores (30 rowers) and the Cisocontores (20 rowers) of the family of monorems (one rower per bench and rowing). The Pentekontoros is larger and therefore more conducive to the embarkation of troops (archers, hoplites), faster and stable because it is as wide but better equipped as human power, more massive and therefore more efficient at ramming. Became the standard military ship of the Athenian fleet at war with Rhodes, Macedonia, pirates, and especially the hereditary enemy, the Persian Empire. Before the Dies emerged, these pentecontents formed the majority of the units of the ancient fleets from the 4th century BC The Persians made extensive use of these ships at Salamis, as these were their only main units, and were beaten By the Greeks who put Dières et Trières in line. The Pentecontents formed the bulk of the light units of the Macedonian, Carthaginian, Roman, and Ptolemaic fleets, disappearing in 200 AD, replaced by the Liburnes and their two or three oarsmen rowing, called "scaloccio swimming."
Length of 27 to 30 meters on average, ranging from 3.50 to 3.80 meters, moving about 40 or 50 tons, the Pentecontore had a flared section hull. She had a crew reduced to an officer, a helmsman, a "guard-chiourme", rather in the role of "quartermaster" (giving the rhythm of swimming, the Greek rowers being volunteers paying a "right of Passage "and not slaves, some of which could participate in the fighting in case of collision.), Ten hoplites, able to move on a thin central platform, the" gateway "faithful to the original semantics, Shapes to the foredeck and back. In case of ramming, the tripoint bronze rostrum benefited from the mass effect of the galley launched at 5-6 knots (10 Km/h).