model of Irish Curragh
constructed by James M. Norton in 2006

Below are images of a commissioned model of a 36' ocean-going Irish curragh, of a type supposedly used by the Irish monk Brendan the Navigator on his voyages in the North Atlantic.  The 1/24 scale model (1/2 inch equals 1 foot) was completely scratch-built and was constructed in the ancient tradition of sewn leather hides stretched over a lightweight wooden frame.  The configuration of the curragh and the original sculpture of Brendan at the helm are based on descriptions by Fred Hoffman in  "Beyond Crystal Castles" (Xlibris books), the first book in his "Empires for the Taking" series.   Brendan's voyages are also described in the epic Navigatio sancti Brendani Abbatis, but you'll need to dust off your Latin dictionary!


Port side high


off port bow


off starboard bow


off port quarter


off starboard quarter


Brendan at helm