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Flying Dutchman

A ship that has been cursed to sail the ocean for eternity, The Flying Dutchman is considered by sailors to be one of the worst possible omens. In some stories anyone who sets eyes on it will die a horrible death. In others the crew of The Flying Dutchman will try to give letters to any ship that hails it. These letters are always addressed to people who have long been dead and touching any of the letters will bring you great misfortune. The captain of the Flying Dutchman is believed to be Captain Benard Fokke who was known for his impressive sailing speed, so much so it was believed that he was in league with the devil.

There have been many theories about the origin of The Flying Dutchman. In most cases the crew and captain of the ship were guilty of a horrible crime which lead to them being punished by condemning them to sail the sea forever. In other tales it is a dutch ship that was lost off The Cape of Good Hope in 1641. Sightings of the ship date back to the 17th century but 19th and 20th century sightings claim that the ship was surrounded by a ghostly light. One documented sighting was by Prince George of Wales when he was teenager and on a three year voyage:

“At 4 a.m. the Flying Dutchman crossed our bows. A strange red light as of a phantom ship all aglow, in the midst of which light the masts, spars and sails of a brig 200 yards distant stood out in strong relief as she came up on the port bow, where also the officer of the watch from the bridge clearly saw her, as did the quarterdeck midshipman, who was sent forward at once to the forecastle; but on arriving there was no vestige nor any sign whatever of any material ship was to be seen either near or right away to the horizon, the night being clear and the sea calm. Thirteen persons altogether saw her … At 10.45 a.m. the ordinary seaman who had this morning reported the Flying Dutchman fell from the foretop mast cross trees on to the top gallant forecastle and was smashed to atoms.”



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