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While the victims of the Titanic disaster at 1,507 persons accounted for a huge loss of life, a matter wich, with other influencing factors, has resulted in an enduring fascination with that tragedy, each of the ships described here had a greater number of casualties, in some cases more than five times as many. In total, these 27 merchant ship sinkings resulted in a staggering loss of life at sea - more than 96,000 in total, a staggering 3,840 per ship. While the circumstances of their losses were different to those of the Titanic, the outcome in each was no less tragic. Thus, while it is not the intention to diminish the gravity of the Titanic case, these far less well-known tragedies do give 'the worse disaster at sea' a sobering perspective. Yet, despite the fact that the Titanic disaster ranks behind so many other losses, so powerful has her name become as representation of extreme misfortune, that it was the inevitable choice to describe some of these other events.

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