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History of Nautical Lanterns and Lamps.

Starboard and Port Navigation lights

The Use of these lights over the ages was to determine which way a ship was travelling at night and information can be found in Rules of the Road for navigation. Ships traveling toward each other have to pass starboard side to starboard side. These lights are also called the running lights on vessels and identify the starboard side with green light and the portside with a red port light. These should only be visible from a number of degrees facing the bow of the ship.

Starboard light and port light, Nautical oil lamps from Anchorlamps.com

These are modern reproductions of the traditional port and starboard lights

Ships traveling towards each other (bow to bow) know because of the rules of the road that their Green or starbord light should pass the oncoming vessel on the starboard side which has the visible green light.Ships pass oncoming vessels in a starboard to starboard manner.This prevents confusion should either ship's navigator steer a sharp turn to the side. The Red port light is used on the PORT side and simply means that the ships do not pass port-to-port when they approach each other.

The Red light is called the Port side because port wine is red. The original name for the opposite side was Larboard, but over the years it was corrupted to Starboard.If two vessels are approaching each other and can see both Green(Starboard Light) and also see the Red (Portside light) than at that stage they are on a collision course.

Anchor Light.

This is are modern copper reproductions
of the traditional Anchor Lamp.

The Use of an anchor light on a vessel is to show other ships that the vessel is at anchor. It is a white all round light,usualy displayed at the top of the mast. They were widely used by old merchant vessels while lying at Anchor awating entry to Port .

Copper anchor oil lamp, Nautical oil lamps from Anchorlamps.com

Cargo Light.

Starboard oil lamp, Nautical Oil Lamps from Anchorlamps.com

This is a modern reproductions
of the traditional type of Cargo Lamp.

Before vessels had electricity, the British sailors attached these Cargo Lamps to ropes which where fixed to the sides of the Cargo holds which allowed them to run up and down the fixed ropes. The sailors would then hoist them up and down the vessel's hold to check on the state of the cargo they where carrying while at sea. .

To see our range
of Nautical Oil Lights.


Copper anchor light, Nautical Oil Lamps from Anchorlamps.com

Nautical Oil Lamps from our nautical shop                Nautical Oil Lanterns from our Nautical oil lantern shop

P.O.Box No.3950 : Albrighton : Nr.Wolverhampton : West Midlands : United Kingdom : WV73WL.