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Pickle rigging question

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Are these the usual pendants that go over the masthead first, and all the shrouds go on top of them? these are used for slinging heavy loads ect and when not in use they either simply dangle in space or are tied against the inner face of the shrouds so they dont sway and bang into the mast. There has been discussion of their disposition elsewhere on Model Ship World and probably people see them in different ways. I think most agree there is no tackle attached to them unless they are in use lifting a heavy object or used as a purchase for setting up the shroud lanyards. I myself have never understood their necessity yet they are seen on all ships. But I can imagine that if there was a need for a purchase above the deck in this location, the top or the masthead itself could serve as a place to attach tackle, and a pair of dedicated lines with oversized eyes on them would not be needed all the time. On the other hand you cant argue with the historical record so they must have been worth the trouble to have them there.




 Niagara USS Constitution 


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