English Bottoms - The Navigation Act

Set up. Ayscue sweeps in on the westerly.

The Navigation Act was a piece of legislation designed to annoy the Dutch and wrest back some control over the global movement of trade commodities from the commercially adroit GWC/VOC and trade bodies of the Dutch Republic. 

T2. The faster English ships break away from Rainbow.

It went a considerable distance in starting the 1st Anglo-Dutch War as the Commonwealth Navy used it as an excuse to stop and search pretty much anywhere on the high seas.  

T2. The English try and form a line as the Dutch forge on.

Cargoes were to be carried to and from English colonies and British ports in 'English bottoms' ie in the holds of English ships and not foreign ones. The amount of money the Dutch were coining with their commodious, low-crew to burthen ratio fluyts was driving the English to distraction and financial ruin. Convoying was already well established and although the Dutch admiralties were as bureaucratically heavy as any institution, the hiring of reasonably strong protection from the VOC or even privateers, was compensating for a lack of large naval warships and demonstrated once more, Dutch pragmatism. 

T3. The line is formed and the battle is about to commence.

Rupert's escapades in the Tropics were set against the backdrop of the Navigation Act. Probably, if the Royalists had been in power they would have implemented something similar but in event, this was Cromwell's problem. The Royalists were succoured to an extent by the House of Orange which was anti-Republican. So Rupert I am certain would have enjoyed some schadenfreude on the issue.

T4. Widespread outbreak of gunnery

One of the most enjoyable scenarios I have run during the ongoing Gambia campaign is an encounter between George Ayscue's Barbados Squadron, newly back across the Atlantic from the Caribbean and an inbound VOC convoy from the Far East. Ayscue is actually looking for Rupert but instead finds the Dutch and must invoke the Navigation Act. 

T7. Captain Jan Pelsaert is killed when Schiedam is hit by a broadside from Increase

His flag is in an Elizabethan era rebuild Rainbow. The rest of his squadron is composed of hired merchants except one Swedish-built ship captured from the French about 18 months prior. He is attempting to arrest the progress of seven VOC ships led by a very powerful 48, Vogelstruis (Ostrich).

Schiedam has fought off Increase and is moving north again.

The English have the weather gauge riding on a brisk westerly. The Dutch have refused to stop so, there is going to be some shootin'. 

T10. Vogelstruis is on fire after being hit by Amity and Rainbow.

These pictures show the action unfold and demonstrate that to mix it on the open ocean, you need well-armed, superior crewed, weatherly ships!