March 6, 2022, 6:00 amUpdated: March 7, 2022, 10:19 am
So ferocious was competition in the tea trade of the 19th century that sailing ships raced against each other to port to win the highest price for their precious cargo.
Chief among these elegant and swift tea clippers was the Aberdeen-built Thermopylae – an innovative design aimed at crossing the world as fast as the trade winds could carrier her.
Here, Jade Flannery, a museum assistant at Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums, tells the story of this fascinating ship – a model of which is on display in Aberdeen Maritime Museum.
It is a tale of ingenuity, courage and a desperate race against its arch-rival tea clipper – the world-famous Cutty Sark.
Two-Minute Masterpiece is a series featuring the north-east’s art treasures. Telling the stories of these works – and sharing their love for them – will be the people who see them every day, the staff at the galleries or museums where they are held.