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Under maritime refers to driving on oceans and seas with ships and boats . The umbrella term is shipping .


Seafaring is one of the oldest human activities. The first seafarers settled Australia as early as the end of the Paleolithic Age . Seafaring peoples populated numerous islands, especially in the Pacific . According to more recent findings, America was also settled along the west coast by seafarers. In the Bronze Age , the first sea shipping arose in the eastern Mediterranean.

Life on board was and is still partly determined by hierarchy , obedience and responsibility . For a long time the captain was the master next God and often the master of life and death. Even today, the captain is the one on board who bears overall responsibility and has special powers that go beyond other vehicle drivers in land or air traffic. The crew itself has been structured like a military since ancient times. The distinction between officers and men was strict and still exists - in a weakened form - today. However, the massive mechanization and rationalization in the 20th century brought about considerable changes. The ship crews became considerably smaller. Seafarers (sailors) must be more qualified in various directions and, in addition to the classic nautical competence, have technical competence in particular . Life on board is more comfortable today than it used to be, but berthing times in ports have become very short.


The seafaring can be divided into according to purposes of use

  1. commercial shipping
    1. Merchant shipping
    2. Passenger shipping
    3. Ferry service
    4. Deep sea fishing
  2. military shipping (see also navy )
  3. Piracy (plunder)
  4. Research shipping
  5. Recreational boating

Seafaring in Poetry

Important sea poets are Joseph Conrad and Herman Melville . In Germany, Gorch Fock should be mentioned.


See also

Web links

Commons : Seafaring  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Seafaring  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations