The Phantom Ship
- The Phantom Ship (1839) is a Gothic novel by Frederick Marryat which explores the legend of the Flying Dutchman. The plot concerns the quest of Philip Vanderdecken of Terneuzen, Holland to save his father. After his father made a rash oath to heaven and slew one of the crew whilst attempting to sail round the Cape of Good Hope, he has been doomed to sail for eternity as Captain of the Phantom Ship. Philip Vanderdecken’s dying mother tells him of the curse upon his father, for whom he is named. En route to India, Captain Vanderdecken, the father, swore that he would round the Cape of Good Hope if it took him until Judgment Day. As a result, he and his crew are cursed to sail the seas in nautical limbo until then. The only way to break the spell is for a family member to present him with the relic of the Holy Cross that his son Philip now wears round his neck. The son Philip sails around the world in a number of ships, in the employ of the Dutch East India Company. His quest, however, brings him into conflict with earthly and unearthly powers as the sight of the Flying Dutchman brings doom to all who encounter her.