The Quest to Find -and Save- the World's Most Famous Shipwreck

In 1625, King Gustavus II Adolphus of Sweden commissioned a huge warship for his navy. It was to be called the Vasa, after the royal house of Vasa. This was no ordinary ship: besides being bigger than anything his shipbuilders had tried before, it was to be a lethal war machine, and beautiful as well.

For three years carpenters, sailmakers, painters, woodcarvers, ropemakers, and hundreds of other artisans and craftsmen rushed to build the king’s vessel. The Vasa would be a floridly...

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