The 1985 replica of the Prins Willem in 2005
The Prins Willem was a 17th-century East Indiaman of the Dutch East India Company. It was their largest ship at the time. The ship made its first voyage to the Dutch East Indies in 1651. After several voyages, it sank near Madagascar in 1662. A replica of the Prins Willem was built in 1985, but it was destroyed by fire in 2009.
The ship Prins Willim was built in 1650 in Middelburg in the Dutch Republic. Curiously, the name on the ship was Prins Willim. Two possible reasons have been advanced: the ship’s name is Middle Dutch or the lack of space for the name caused the “e” to be changed to a shorter “i”. [Citation needed]
The ship was the flagship of Witte de With in the Battle of the Kentish Knock during the First Anglo-Dutch War.
In the same period as the building of the original ship also a replica in 1:50 scale was built. This model still survives and is on permanent exhibition in the Dutch national museum Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. In 1978 this model was fully restorated and a replica of the same scale was constructed.