The 'Fontenaye' in the China seas
A portrait of the clipper ship 'Fontenaye' in full sail. Employed in the China tea trade, she is shown here in the China Seas. Little is known about the ship, although later there was a barque of the same name which travelled between England and New Zealand in the 1880s. The 'Fontenaye' tea clipper has been painted by a Chinese artist and would have been commissioned while the ship was taking delivery of tea to bring back to England. The years from 1850 to 1865 are regarded as the great age of the clipper ships. Clippers were square-rigged vessels with narrow, streamlined hulls which enabled them to travel at considerable speed. Because of the way such commodity markets operated, such fast ships like the 'Fontenaye' were needed for premium freights, such as tea from China.
- Image reference: BHC2206
- National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
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