Royal Danish Naval Museum

At first glance I thought the Orlogsmuseet was going to be a watchmaking museum, because I incorrectly associated the Danish word orlogs with the French word horloge. But it turned out to be the Royal Danish Naval Museum, with a walk-in model of an old warship and several detailed models of historic naval battles.

Model of a naval battle

In this model, little wisps of cotton are used to show the smoke when a cannon had just been fired.

Model of a mud machine from 1751

Just be glad you weren’t a prisoner in Denmark in the eighteenth century, because they used prisoner-power to drive the mud-machines that kept the harbors deep enough for big sailing ships. This mud-machine from the year 1751 was able to dig mud down to a depth of six meters. It was propelled by 22 prisoners in two treadmills. The model in the museum display case is a contemporary model make to a scale of 1:16.

Models of fully-rigged sailing ships

The Royal Danish Naval Museum (Orlogsmuseet) also includes numerous models of fully-rigged sailing ships, mostly warships. The accompanying texts, in Danish and English, remind us that these ships were the basis of Danish military power for centuries, and required huge amounts of highly disciplined manpower to run them.

Another model of a warship

The opera Billy Budd, by Benjamin Britten (1913-1976), takes place on a warship much like the ones shown here.

Model of Copenhagen harbor as it used to be

The Maritime Museum is at Frederiksholms Kanal 29 in Copenhagen.

My photos in this post are from 2009. I revised the text in 2018.

See more posts on Copenhagen, Denmark.

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