The hunt for whales to extract oil (oil) took place in two periods in Holland during the Golden Age. The early period (1614-1640, the time of the Greenland Company) was characterized by the hiring of Basques, who had practiced whaling for centuries, when it was still possible off their own coast. Dutch whaling took place in the bays of Spitsbergen, Bear Island and Jan Mayen Island in the Arctic Ocean, where the animals often resided. The processing of the carcasses and the cooking of the bacon took place on the beaches of the islands, where large cooking pots were built and small settlements emerged. Mutual rivalry, mainly with the English active in the same area, caused a lot of damage to the cookeries. Climatic conditions (the Little Ice Age) also influenced the intensity of whaling during the seventeenth century. No special requirements were imposed on the ships during this period; they served primarily for the transport of blubber or whale oil.
The second period (1660-1690 and later) was different, because the company had lost its patent and free trade struck. Another difference was that people had to go further out to the open sea, because the bays had gradually been emptied. Because processing now had to take place on board, it became necessary to acquire ships with wide decks. In addition, it had to be possible to take the hunting boats on board, for which purpose a gallows was laid over the campaign and the main mast was made heavier. Thick fenders protected the ship’s hull from damage when the sloops were lifted. The ships were often also provided with a double layer, a second skin, against the pack ice.
The Paerel model contains all the features of a whaling whistle from this period.
It is no wonder that not many original seventeenth-century ship models have been preserved, because the materials used have different lifespans. In particular, that of the textiles of sails and cordage is limited to approximately 150 years. This equipment is rapidly deteriorating and the only way to make the ship look decent again is a total replacement. Paint lasts longer. but after several centuries it also requires the necessary attention. Metal oxidizes and corrodes surrounding materials. Finally, the wood itself deforms over the years and is susceptible to insect damage, dehydration and rot. The appearance of a model that has survived several centuries untreated usually does not deserve a beauty prize.