A full-sized replica Roman galley was launched on Germany's Moselle river Friday near the city of Trier, once the northern capital of the Roman Empire. The 18-metre Stella Noviomagi (Latin for Star of Neumagen, a nearby town) was based on a Roman sculpture found in that town.
Galleys were Roman warships rowed by slaves to carry troop supplies. The German model will take up to 50 tourists at a time for rides. No slaves are required as it has two diesel engines.
Promoters, who raised 400,000 euros (555,000 dollars) to build the 14-ton oak vessel, said it was the first galley to navigate the Moselle river for 1,700 years and would make its maiden voyage on September 29.