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Shipwrecks laden with ceramics offer a unique time capsule of material for study and research.  The wrecks are very often serendipitously found by local fisherman, as in the great majority of the examples discussed in this paper.  However, archival research of original documents is also used to identify the general location of shipwreck Spanish galleons, Dutch East India Company - VOC (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie) ships, and Portuguese trading vessels.  The seabed of the general area can then be searched systematically with side-scan sonar, magnetometers, and remotely operated vehicles (ROV) to pinpoint the actual wrecksite.  Conversely, a shipwreck, which has already been found, may be positively identified by archival research - as in the case of the Portuguese vessel the Espadarte, discussed further below.


Large quantities of contemporaneously produced ceramics, often from more than just a single production center in a single country, provide an unrivalled opportunity for comparative study of materials, techniques, decorative motifs, production output, and trade patterns.  Shipwrecks present a real window into the past and an invaluable aide for establishing production methods, chronologies, comparative dating, stylistic evolution, and trends.

Presented here are descriptive summaries of the Southeast Asia, Africa, Europe, China, and the Americas shipwrecks in terms of location of wreck site, date found, ceramic cargo, disposition of excavated material, and the corresponding ceramics included in the Collection: 99 wrecks, 1,634 ceramics, and 550 Banda wreck shards.  Additional information for each of the ceramics is also available in the corresponding Ceramics Catalogue Description Documents and Photos Folders with a detailed description including date, size, location and cost of acquisition; and with Photos of each including the base.  There are separate Summaries for each of the Southeast Asia Shipwreck countries (Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand) and a single Summary for the remainder (Other Shipwrecks - Africa Shipwrecks, Europe Shipwrecks, China Shipwrecks, and Americas Shipwrecks). The Shipwrecks are as follows:


Philippines – Lena Shoal (Busuanga), Pandanan, Jolo Wreck (Gujangan), Santa Cruz (Zambales), Balabac Island Shipwreck, San Diego, Royal Captain Shoal (Wreck 2), Marinduque (Gaspar site), San Isidro, Luuk Island Wrecksite, Santiago Island Wrecksite, Unidentified shipwreck No. 1 - an unidentified wrecksite in the Philippines, Unidentified shipwrecks No. 2 to No. 5 - unidentified wrecksites reportedly in the Sulu Sea off of Mindanao.


Malaysia – Royal Nanhai, Longquan, Xuande, Turiang, Desaru, Nanyang, Wanli, Tanjung Simpang, Singtai, Transitional Wrecksite, Diana Cargo, Unidentified Malaysian shipwreck.


Vietnam – Binh Thuan, Hoi An, Ca Mau, Vung Tau (Hon Cau Wreck), 

Phu Quoc I, Hon Dam Shipwreck (Phu Quoc II), Phu Quoc II (A), Phu Quoc III (Kien Giang Wreck), Song Doc (Ca Mau Town Wreck), Quang Ngai, Phu Yen (Binh Dinh) Shipwreck, Binh Thuan No. 2 (Yuan shipwreck), Song Doc - Ming wrecksite, Vung Tau No. 2 wrecksite, Quang Ngai No. 2, Tang Wreck, Quang Ngai (Binh Chau) - Yuan Shipwreck, Con Dao Island Wreck, Phan Thiet Shipwreck, Phu Quoc/Cambodia Shipwreck, Quang Ngai (Binh Chau) - Qing Shipwreck, Unidentified shipwreck No. 1, Unidentified Shipwreck No. 2, Unidentified Wrecksite No. 3, Unidentified Wrecksite No. 4, and Unidentified Wrecksite No. 5.


Indonesia – Belitung (Batu Hitam), Belanakan Wreck (Balanikan),

Hatcher Ming (Hatcher Junk, Gosong Serdang), Cirebon,

Nanking Cargo (Geledermalsen), Tek Sing, Karang Cina, Jepara, Mandalika, Pontianak Wreck Site (West Kalimantan, Borneo), Belanakan No. 2 (Untung Jawa, Wanli Cargo Project), Maspare, Ternate - Tidore Shipwreck, Tuban - East Java shipwreck, Kangxi Indonesia Shipwreck, Riau Xicun Shipwreck, Unidentified Indonesia Shipwreck No. 1, Unidentified shipwreck No. 2, Unidentified shipwreck No. 3, and Unidentified shipwreck No. 4.


Thailand – Ko Khram (Sattahip), Ko Kradat Wreck, Pattaya Wrecksite, Prasae Rayong (Rayong), Rang Kwien Wreck, Songkhla Wreck, Ko Si Chang One Wreck, Ko Si Chang Two Wreck, Ko Samui Wreck, Ko Si Chang Three Wreck, Ko Samae San Site, Australia Tide (Klang Aow I), Klang Aow II, Unidentified Gulf of Thailand Shipwrecks - No. 1 to No. 4.                                                               


Brunei – Brunei Junk.


Africa – Fort San Sebastian Wreck (Espadarte, Mozambique), São Francisco wreck (Astrolabe wreck, San Francisco wreck), Banda Shipwreck, Sao Joaco Wreck, and Sao Bento Wreck.


Europe – Gotheborg Swedish East Indiaman, Princess Maria (Dutch East India VOC company ship -1686), Association shipwreck (1707), and HMS Colossus (1798).


China – Bai Jiao No. 1 shipwreck (Baijiao I, Lianjiang).Xisha Islands in the South China Sea, Nanhai 2 shipwreck (South China Sea II, Nan Hai No. II), Nanhai 1 shipwreck.


Americas – San Martín (Almiranta de Honduras, Green Cabin wreck) - 1618, Santa Margarita (1622 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Nuestra Señora de la Atocha (1622 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Nuestra Señora de la Pura y Limpia Concepción - 1641, Monte Cristi shipwreck (Pipe Wreck) - 1652, 1715 Spanish Treasure Fleet, Nuestra Señora de la Regla (1715 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Nuestra Señora de Las Nieves (1715 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Santo Cristo de San Roman (1715 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Capitana El Rubí Segundo (Flagship of 1733 Spanish Treasure Fleet), San José y Las Animas (1733 Spanish Treasure Fleet), Unidentified Florida Keys wreck - 1700’s.


general listing of Shipwreck References is included at the end of the final Summary.


Study and research was conducted on 99 shipwrecks located in Southeast Asia, China, Africa, Europe, and the Americas; representative specimens of ceramics from each of these shipwrecks acquired and safeguarded in personal collection.  Detailed information is provided for each Shipwreck along with examples of recovered ceramics and photos.  The descriptive summaries for each include location of wrecksite, date found, ceramic cargo, disposition of excavated material, and the corresponding ceramics included in the Ceramics Catalogue: 99 shipwrecks, 1,634 ceramics and 550 Banda wreck shards.










AFRICA SHIPWRECKS - 3                   

EUROPE SHIPWRECKS - 4                                                      

CHINA SHIPWRECKS - 1                                                              



Detailed information on the Shipwrecks is provided in the following:

Shipwrecks Summary - provides an outline with the name, location, date of sinking, date of discovery, and quantity and cost of ceramics from each shipwreck in the Catalogue (grouped by location).   SUMMARY

Shipwrecks Alphabetical Listing - includes name, location, and date of each shipwreck in alphabetical order.   LISTING

Shipwreck Ceramics Summaries -  includes descriptive details for each of the shipwrecks in terms of location of wreck site, date found, ceramic cargo, disposition of excavated material, and a brief description of the corresponding ceramics included in the Ceramics Catalogue (including size and cost of acquisition): 99 wrecks, 1,634 ceramics, and 550 Banda wreck shards (grouped by location).  There are separate Summaries (in the form of individual Documents) for each of the Southeast Asia Shipwreck countries:

Philippines  Shipwrecks

Malaysia  Shipwrecks

Vietnam Shipwrecks

Indonesia  Shipwrecks

Thailand Shipwrecks

Other Shipwrecks (A single Summary for the remainder of the shipwrecks - Brunei Shipwreck, Africa Shipwrecks, Europe Shipwrecks, China Shipwrecks, Americas Shipwrecks; also includes a general listing of Shipwreck References). 


CERAMICS CATALOGUE Descriptions - may also be referred to and consist of Documents, organized by category of wares  (Burma, Khmer, Thai, Viet, Other; and Qing, Ming, Song, Yuan, Tang), which detail each of the 1,634 shipwreck ceramics and shards including: Catalogue Number, description, size, dating, provenance (origin, place and date of acquisition, cost), and any references to comparable examples.


Shipwreck Ceramics Photos - photos, including the base, of each item from each of the 99 shipwrecks are included organized in Folders for each individual Shipwreck - as listed below:



PHILIPPINES - 14 Shipwrecks 


 Balabac Island Shipwreck - late 15 to early 16 C

 Jolo (Gujangan) Shipwreck - late 15 to early 16 C 

 Lena Shoal Shipwreck - late 15th C 

 Luuk Island Shipwreck - early to mid 14 C 

 Pandanan Shipwreck - mid 15th C 

 San Diego Shipwreck - 14 December 1600 

 San Isidro Shipwreck - mid 16th C 

 Santa Cruz (Zambales) Shipwreck - circa 1490 

 Santiago Island Wrecksite - mid 17 to early 18 C 

 Philippines - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 1 - mid 15th C 

 Philippines - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 2 - 16th C  

 Philippines - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 3 - late 15th C 

 Philippines - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 4 - 14th C 

 Philippines - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 5 - 13th C   


MALAYSIA - 12 Shipwrecks     


 Desaru Shipwreck - circa 1830 

 Diana Cargo - 5 March 1817            

 Longquan Shipwreck - late 14 to early 15 C 

 Nanyang Shipwreck - circa 1380    

 Royal Nanhai Shipwreck - mid 15th C   

 Singtai Shipwreck - circa 1550  

 Tanjung Simpang Shipwreck - early 11 C Northern Song 

 Transitional Wrecksite - Malaysia - 2nd half 17 C   

 Turiang Shipwreck - circa 1370 to 1400 

 Wanli Shipwreck - circa 1625  

 Xuande Shipwreck - circa 1520 to 1530   

 Malaysia - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 1 – first half 19 C 


VIETNAM - 26 Shipwrecks


 Binh Thuan No. 2 - Yuan Shipwreck - 2nd half 14th century

 Binh Thuan Shipwreck - late 16th to early 17th century 

 Ca Mau Shipwreck - circa 1725 

 Con Dao Island Shipwreck - early 15th century 

 Hoi An Shipwreck - late 15th century 

 Hon Dam Shipwreck (Phu Quoc II) - early to mid 15th C 

 Phan Thiet Shipwreck - late 14th century - Ming 

 Phu Quoc - Cambodia Shipwreck - early to mid 15th C 

 Phu Quoc II (A) Shipwreck - 16th century

 Phu Quoc III (Kien Giang Wreck) - late 14th to early 15th C

 Phu Yen Shipwreck - early 14th century 

 Quang Ngai (Binh Chau) - Qing Shipwreck - circa 1820 to 1825 

 Quang Ngai (Binh Chau) - Yuan Shipwreck - early 14th century   

 Quang Ngai No. 2 Shipwreck - 19th century 

 Quang Ngai Shipwreck - Yuan Dynasty (1271 to 1378)  

 Song Doc - Ming Wrecksite - mid to late 16th century 

 Song Doc Shipwreck - circa 1375 to 1400 

 Tang Wreck - Vietnam - 9th century  

 Tet Shipwreck - second half of 15th century  

 Vung Tau No. 2 Wrecksite - 18th to early 19th century 

 Vung Tau Shipwreck -  circa 1690 

 Vietnam - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 1 - Transitional mid 17 C  

 Vietnam - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 2 - late Ming - early 17 C 

 Vietnam - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 3 - 15 century 

 Vietnam - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 4 – Yuan - early 14 C 

 Vietnam - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 5 - late Ming, circa 1620 

INDONESIA  - 21 Shipwrecks


 Belanakan No. 1 Shipwreck - circa 1480

 Belanakan No. 2 (Wanli Cargo Project) - late 16th century, Wanli 

 Belitung (Batu Hitam) Shipwreck - 826 of Tang Dynasty 

 Cirebon Shipwreck - late Five Dynasties, circa 968 

 Hatcher Ming (Hatcher Junk) - approximately 1643 

 Jepara Shipwreck - Southern Song (1127 to 1279) - 12th century

 Kangxi Indonesia Shipwreck - circa 1710 

 Karang Cina Shipwreck - early Yuan, 13th century 

 Mandalika Shipwreck - Northern Song - 11th to 12th century 

 Maspare Wrecksite - Transitional period (second half 17th C.) 

 Nanking Cargo (Geldermalsen) Shipwreck - 3 January 1752 

 Pontianak Wreck Site - Northern Song - 11th to 12th century 

 Riau Xicun Wreck - Northern Song - late 10th to early 11th C 

 Swatow Indonesia Shipwreck - late 16th to early 17th century 

 Tek Sing Shipwreck - 1822 

 Ternate - Tidore Shipwreck - approximately 1610 to 1620 

 Tuban, East Java - Yuan Shipwreck - 14th century    

 Indonesia - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 1 - Northern Song - 11 to 12 C 

 Indonesia - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 2 - Northern Song - 11 C 

 Indonesia - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 3 - Ming - mid 17 C 

 Indonesia - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 4 - late 15 C 


THAILAND - 6 Shipwrecks


 Australia Tide (Klang Aow l) Shipwreck - 1500 to 1530   

 Rang Kwien (Chinese Coin) Wreck - circa 1400 to 1430 

 Thailand - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 1 - 16 C 

 Thailand - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 2 - 16 C 

 Thailand - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 3 - 15 C

 Thailand - Unidentified Shipwreck No. 4 - 15 C    



Africa Shipwrecks, Europe Shipwrecks, China Shipwrecks,

Americas Shipwrecks

AFRICA – 3 Shipwrecks


 Banda Shipwreck - March 1615 

 Fort San Sebastian (Espadarte) Shipwreck - 1554 

 São Francisco (Astrolabe) Shipwreck - circa 1650 


EUROPE - 4 Shipwrecks


 Association Shipwreck - 22 October 1707 

 Colossus Shipwreck - 10 December 1798 

 Gotheborg Swedish East Indiaman Shipwreck - 12 September 1745 

 Princess Maria Wreck (Dutch East India VOC Company ship) - 1686 


CHINA – 1 Shipwreck


 Bai Jiao Shipwreck - 12th to 13th century of the Southern Song 


AMERICAS – 12 Shipwrecks


 Capitana El Rubí Segundo (Flagship 1733 Fleet) - 14 July 1733  

 Florida Keys - Unidentified Wreck - 1700’s

 Monte Cristi (Pipe Wreck) - 1652 to 1656, Dominican Republic

 Nuestra Señora de la Atocha (1622 Treasure Fleet) - 6 Sep 1622

 Nuestra Señora de la Pura y Limpia Concepción - 31 Oct 1641

 Nuestra Señora de la Regla (1715 Treasure Fleet) - 31 July  1715

 Nuestra Señora de Las Nieves (1715 Treasure Fleet) - 31 July 1715  

 San José y Las Animas (1733 Treasure Fleet) - 14 July 1733

 San Martín (Almiranta de Honduras, Green Cabin wreck) - 1618 

 Santa Margarita (1622 Treasure Fleet) - 6 September 1622 

 Santo Cristo de San Roman (1715 Treasure Fleet) - 31 July 1715 

 Spanish Treasure Fleet of 1715 - 31 July 1715 

Note:  There are 10 Shipwrecks included for information only

(Royal Captai Shoal [Wreck 2], Marinduque, Phu Quoc I, Brunei, 

Sao Joaco Wreck, Sao Bento Wreck, Xisha Islands in the South

China Sea, Nanhai 2 shipwreck [South China Sea II, Nan Hai No. II],

and Nanhai 1 shipwreck). These wrecks are not represented in the

Shipwreck Photos Section and are not part of the 99 shipwrecks. 

Similarly, most of the Thai shipwrecks, except for the 6 indicated above,

have been included for information purposes only.




M-494 (1 of 2) Crop.jpg

Swatow Indonesia Shipwreck

Con Dao Island Shipwreck - Vietnam

Philippines - Unidentified Wreck No. 1

Tek Sing Shipwreck - Indonesia

Nanyang TH-419 Crop.jpg

Wanli Shipwreck


Nanyang Shipwreck


Hatcher Ming M-476 - CROP.jpg

Hatcher Ming Shipwreck - Indonesia

Kangxi Indo C-165 to C-213 (Set).jpg

Kangxi Indo Shipwreck

Singtai Shipwreck


Y-107 crop.jpg

Karang Cina Wreck


Quang Nai (Binh Chua) - Yuan Wreck


Gotheborg Swedish East Indiaman Wreck

Lena Shoal M-244.jpg

Lena Shoal Wreck


Y-105 (2 of 2)_edited.jpg

Binh Thuan No. 2 - Yuan Shipwreck


Cirebon Shipwreck - Indonesia

Jolo (Gujangan) Shipwreck - Bowls 2.jpg

Jolo Shipwreck - Philippines

Pandanan Shipwreck - Philippines

Fort San Sebastian M-389 (Sides & Base).jpg

Fort San Sebastian Shipwreck - Africa

Phan Thiet M-505 (1 to 5 of 5 - Series).jpg

Phan Thiet Shipwreck - Vietnam

Belitung T-012 Crop.jpg
Maspare C-140 Crop.jpg

Belitung Shipwreck


Maspare Wrecksite


Bai Jiao S-054 (2 of 2 - Pair) Crop.jpg

Bai Jiao Shipwreck - China

Nanking Cargo C-239 (Side - 1 to 3).jpg


Nanking Cargo Shipwreck - Indonesia

Desaru C-259 (Side - 1 to 4) Crop.jpg

Desaru Shipwreck

Hoi An Shipwreck

Quang Ngai (Binh Chau) - Yuan Y-132 (1 & 2 of 2) Crop.jpg

Quang Ngai (Binh Chua) - Yuan Shipwreck

Royal Nanhai TH-415 crop.jpg

Royal Nanhai Wreck

Binh Thuan M-280 (9 of 9 - Set).jpg

Binh Thuan Wreck

Monte Cristi (Pipe Wreck) O-027 (1 to 8 of 14 - Back).jpg

Monte Cristi (Pipe Wreck) - Dominican Republic

Australia Tide TH-463 Crop.jpg

Australia Tide Shipwreck

Diana C-132 Crop.jpg

Diana Cargo

Song Doc Shipwreck

Xuande Shipwreck

Tet Shipwreck

Ternate-Tidore Wreck

Belanakan No. 1 Wreck

Phu Quoc lll Wreck

TH-441 (Interior) crop.jpg

Nanyang Wreck

S-049 (Interior - 1) Crop.jpg

Tanjung Simpang
Wreck - Malaysia

Nanking Cargo C-119 (2 of 2) crop.jpg

Nanking Cargo Wreck

Con Dao TH-560 Crop.jpg

Con Dao Island Wreck

Binh Thuan No. 2 - Cover Boxes (Y-053 to Y-142) - 2.jpg

Binh Thuan No. 2 - Yuan Wreck - Vietnam

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