British Frigate 1680

In the seventeenth century, the frigate became a key element of any fleet. Standing just below the 74-gun ship, great standard of the time, the Frigate was a useful do-it-all fast ship. It can be found in the pinass type already incorporated into the great galleons fleets of the preceding century. From 1650 Colbert, able Louis XIV marine minister codified for the first time the frigate type, later experienced in the French shipyards. They were looking for a ship faster and lighter than Pinasses, and more stable in roll. British frigates soon were inspired by this type, like this early 1680 example. Still rigged in three-masts, frigates then gradually passed from 20-30 guns,  up to 60 cannons in the eighteenth century. Frigates became also more common as they were found to have a variety of uses, filling the gap between corvettes and ships of the line. The unnamed British frigate presented here was painted with a black livery, used on all the Royal Navy ships at the time, with reasonable ornaments. She had 52 guns, which made it one of the most powerful of its time.