There are many ways of handling a renaming of a boat. We felt that is was appropriate to do it in a way that would celebrate the old, and welcome then new with respect and honour.
The internet is filled with articles and advice on how to do it. We approached it with 4 basic steps:
- Remove trace of the old name: This included keychains, hull logos, liferings, sailbag tags, and anything else that had the old name on it. I also removed all but one reference to the former owner’s name. (
- Perform a ceremony: I had the text of the suggested ceremony on my phone and read it out without any practice (some tongue twisters)
- Make a “sacrifice”: We had chilled bubbly on hand 🙂
- Add the new name.
The text for the CEREMONY below:
”In the name of all who have sailed aboard this ship in the past, and in the name of all who may sail aboard her in the future, we invoke the ancient gods of the wind and the sea to favor us with their blessing today.
“Mighty Neptune, king of all that moves in or on the waves; and mighty Aeolus (pronounced EE-oh-lus), guardian of the winds and all that blows before them:
“We offer you our thanks for the protection you have afforded this vessel in the past. We voice our gratitude that she has always found shelter from tempest and storm and enjoyed safe passage to port.
“Now, wherefore, we submit this supplication, that the name whereby this vessel has hitherto been known _____, be struck and removed from your records.
“Further, we ask that when she is again presented for blessing with another name, she shall be recognized and shall be accorded once again the selfsame privileges she previously enjoyed.
“In return for which, we rededicate this vessel to your domain in full knowledge that she shall be subject as always to the immutable laws of the gods of the wind and the sea.
“In consequence whereof, and in good faith, we seal this pact with a libation offered according to the hallowed ritual of the sea.”
After a boat is denamed, you simply need to rename it using the traditional christening ceremony, preferably with Queen Elizabeth breaking a bottle of champagne on the bow, and saying the words:
“I name this ship ___________, and may she bring fair winds and good fortune to all who sail on her.”