He built of green wood twenty-two galleys, a hundred rafts, and seventeen hundred boats or barks. All the small ports of the Don were metamorphosed into dock-yards; twenty-six thousand workmen were assembled there from all parts of the empire. It was like the camp of Boulogne.
At the same time, all were most anxious that the prizes should be carried to Rhodes. Never, save as the result of some great battle, had such a fleet of captured galleys been brought in, and the knights were prepared to endure all dangers rather than part with one of them. Finally, after much discussion, it was determined that they should make for Genoa.
Some Venetian galleys happened to enter the harbour as the fleet was preparing to weigh, and they joined in the salutes and demonstrations which signalled the departure.
With tears streaming down her withered cheeks while she muttered and cursed, the aged woman fastened Sara's torn bodice, binding the deadly herb within easy hand's reach. A Tyrian merchant-ship manned by three galleys of oarsmen, turned its high and proudly arched red and gold neck into the harbor of Tiberias.
No less than eight galleys went to the bottom. Several more were captured. The brave Barberigo, throwing himself into the heat of the fight, without availing himself of his defensive armor, was pierced in the eye by an arrow, and though reluctant to leave the glory of the field to another, was borne to his cabin. The combat still continued with unabated fury on the part of the Venetians.
Yet my courage remained steadfast, even when a squadron it was commanded by Aruntius pressed upon the fleet. I saw another line of galleys steering directly towards us, and a Roman vessel assailed by one of mine I had named her the Selene turn on her side and sink. This pleased me and seemed like the first presage of victory.
Hannibal's determination to carry an army into Italy by way of the Alps, instead of transporting them by galleys over the sea, has always been regarded as one of the greatest undertakings of ancient times.
Now, after the galleys, he saw the cloister; and when he meditated how he had formed a part of the galleys, and that he now, so to speak, was a spectator of the cloister, he confronted the two in his own mind with anxiety. Sometimes he crossed his arms and leaned on his hoe, and slowly descended the endless spirals of revery.
When Alexander wrote to demand a supply of galleys, and the public speakers objected to sending them, Phocion, on the council requesting his opinion, told them freely, "Sirs, I would either have you victorious yourselves, or friends of those who are so."
From Naples and Sicily were derived in great plenty the best materials and conveniences for ship-building and marine equipment. The galleys and the galley-slaves furnished by these subject realms formed the principal part of the royal navy.