from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A large galleon used in the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A large European sailing vessel of the 14th to 17th centuries similar to a caravel but square-rigged on the foremast and mainmast and lateen-rigged on the mizzenmast.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. See carack.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. See carack.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a large galleon sailed in the Mediterranean as a merchantman


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English carike, from Medieval Latin carrica and from Old French caraque (from Old Spanish carraca), both from Arabic qarāqīr, pl. of qurqūr, from Greek kerkouros, fast light vessel.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French caraque (compare Spanish and Portuguese carraca, Italian caracca), from Latin carraca, from Latin carrus ("wagon"); or perhaps from Arabic.


  • I suspect, however, that they must have been nearly, if not entirely, decked over -- in fact, that they were what are now called flush-decked vessels, while probably the carrack was a frigate-built ship, or, at all events, a ship with a high poop and forecastle.

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  • In the Lansd. MS., British Museum, No. 70., there is a letter from Mr. Richard Champernowne to Sir Robert Cecil, dated in 1592, referring to the discovery of some articles pillaged from the Spanish carrack, which had then recently been captured and taken into Dartmouth harbour.

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  • He informed Heemskerk of the arrival in the straits of Malacca of an immense Lisbon carrack, laden with pearls and spices, brocades and precious-stones, on its way to Europe, and suggested an attack.

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  • The caravel, the Pinta and the huge carrack, the Santa Maria, which was known by its nickname, the Gallega.

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  • A heavily armed small carrack might sport 2 culverins below and 5 demi-culverins on deck per side, which at that rate could sink a ship of its class but only with some work.

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  • I told them about those three ships -- we imagine huge floating fortresses, but Columbus 'ships were shockingly tiny for an open ocean crossing, two small caravels and the flagship Santa María, a carrack -- making their way out of Palos that morning, on a voyage longer and more dangerous than a modern trip to the moon.

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  • And ye had well nigh met him; for here cometh his carrack.

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  • On January 17, 1524, Verrazzano set sail in his carrack La Dauphine.

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  • O that he had but the wealth and treasure of both the Indies to endow her with, a carrack of diamonds, a chain of pearl, a cascanet of jewels, (a pair of calfskin gloves of four-pence a pair were fitter), or some such toy, to send her for a token, she should have it with all his heart; he would spend myriads of crowns for her sake.

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  • Of the captured ships, only a single Stippenese transport carrack was well found and decently armed with a dozen culverins.

    Conqueror's Moon


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