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Water Transportation

  • 7000 BCE

    Prehistoric Rafts

    Prehistoric Rafts
    Anything that floats can be lashed together to make a raft and serve as a boat. Only primitive cutting tools are required. Bamboo, wood logs and reeds have all been used as raw materials, tied together with vines or palm fibers. Early rafts served as fishing platforms, allowed transportation across bodies of water and even formed floating islands for villages.
  • 6000 BCE

    Paintings depicting ships appear on ancient Egyptian vases and murals

    Paintings depicting ships appear on ancient Egyptian vases and murals
    Much of Egyptian civilization developed along the Nile River, making maritime transportation essential to trade.
  • 5500 BCE

    Mesopotamian reed boats

    Mesopotamian reed boats
    Constitute the earliest known evidence for deliberately constructed sailing ships, dated to the early Neolithic Ubaid culture of Mesopotamia
  • 4000 BCE

    Egyptian Redd Boat

    Egyptian Redd Boat
    The Ancient Egyptian had knowledge of sail construction. This is governed by the science of aerodynamics.
    Most probably the first sailing boat
  • 3500 BCE

    Ancient Egyptian Papyrus Boats

    Ancient Egyptian Papyrus Boats
    Early boats were made of papyrus reeds which grow in abundance in the Nile and were also used to make paper-like materials and a host of other things. Papyrus river crafts had a narrow beam and a high, elegantly tapered stem and stern posts featured ends made from raised and bound papyrus.
  • 3500 BCE

    Ceremonial Barks

    Ceremonial Barks
    the Khufu vessels were “solar” barks—that is, intended to identify the king with the sun god Ra in the next world—or whether they were his own ceremonial vessels, buried with him as a ritual offering.
  • 3200 BCE

    Egyptian costal and River sailship

    Egyptian costal and River sailship
    A traditional wooden sailing boat used in the eastern Mediterranean—including around Malta and Tunisia
  • 3100 BCE

    Military Use of Boats in Ancient Egypt

    Military Use of Boats in Ancient Egypt
    The connection of boats with warfare can be traced back to the Predynastic Period.
  • 3000 BCE

    Ancient-Egyptian-Built Boats

    Ancient-Egyptian-Built Boats
    The world's oldest remains of a “built boat," one constructed with planks tied together, comes from Egypt.
    The boat were made from planks fitted together by ropes "sewn" through holes, which in turn were filled with bundles of reeds to prevent leaks. The early boats had no keels and were mostly paddled.
  • 3000 BCE

    Kuphar in Mesopotamia

    Kuphar in Mesopotamia
    Is a type of coracle or round boat traditionally used on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in ancient and modern Mesopotamia. Its circular shape means that it does not sail well against the current, as it tends to spin, but makes it safe, sturdy and easy to construct. A kuphar is propelled by rowing or poling.
  • 2700 BCE


    A galley is a type of ship that is propelled mainly by rowing. The first evidence of more complex craft that are considered to prototypes for later galleys comes from Ancient Egypt during the Old Kingdom (c. 2700–2200 BC).
  • 2600 BCE

    Wadi al-Jarf is an ancient Egyptian port

    Wadi al-Jarf is an ancient Egyptian port
    An ancient L-shaped stone jetty more than 600 feet long that was built to create a safe harbor for boats.
  • 2500 BCE

    Khufu ship

    Khufu ship
    The Khufu ship is an intact full-size vessel from Ancient Egypt that was sealed into a pit in the Giza pyramid complex at the foot of the Great Pyramid of Giza
  • 2500 BCE

    Ancient Egyptian Mortise and Tenon Boats

    Ancient Egyptian Mortise and Tenon Boats
    It was made with mortise-and-tenon joints and a frame lashed to the hull that kept the sides from sagging outward.
  • 2500 BCE

    Steering oar

    Steering oar
    The steering oar or steering board is an over-sized oar or board, to control the direction of a ship or other watercraft prior to the invention of the rudder.
    Steering oars were the typical steering mechanism on larger Viking ships
  • 2400 BCE

    The first known vessels that could handle the waves of the Mediterranean

    The first known vessels that could handle the waves of the Mediterranean
    Were boats that had stiffer hulls that appeared. These vessels didn't have a keel but were kept from tipping over by suspension-bridge-like rope trusses that were attached to upright supports that ran from the bow to stern. The ships were propelled forward by oars and a tall sail mounted on a bipedal mast.
  • 1500 BCE

    Egyptians learned how to make keels and internally reinforced hulls

    Egyptians learned how to make keels and internally reinforced hulls
    Sails were rigged differently and steering oars were relocated.
  • 206 BCE


    first appeared in China during the Han Dynasty, a small, shallow-hulled vessel with one or two masts. The boat’s narrow shape was designed to allow it to glide quickly across the water, while the flat bottom made it possible to dock in shallow waters.
  • 110 BCE


    Is a manuscript document that lists the ports and coastal landmarks, in order and with approximate intervening distances, that the captain of a vessel could expect to find along a shore.
  • 1 CE

    Invention of Rudder in China

    Invention of Rudder in China
    A rudder is a primary control surface used to steer a ship, boat, submarine, hovercraft, aircraft, or other conveyance that moves through a fluid medium
  • 1 CE

    Ships over 50 m long and stood out 4–7 m out of the water.

    Ships over 50 m long and stood out 4–7 m out of the water.
    The people from Nusantara archipelago already made it, they could carry 700-1000 people and 260 ton cargo.
  • 1000

    Knarr by Vikings

    Knarr by Vikings
    The knarr was a cargo ship; the hull was wider, deeper and shorter than a longship, and could take more cargo and be operated by smaller crews. They were built with a length of about 16 m (54 ft), a beam of 5 m (15 ft), and a hull capable of carrying up to 24 tons.
  • 1000


    Longships were a type of specialised Viking warships that have a long history in Scandinavia, with their existence being archaeologically proven
  • 1100


    A cog is a type of ship that first appeared in the 10th century, and was widely used from around the 12th century on. Cogs were clinker-built, generally of oak, which was an abundant timber in the Baltic region of Prussia. This vessel was fitted with a single mast and a square-rigged single sail.
  • 1450


    Was a three- or four-masted ocean-going sailing ship. Was first used for European trade from the Mediterranean to the Baltic and quickly found use with the newly found wealth of the trans-Atlantic trade between Europe, Africa and then the Americas.
  • 1500


    was a small, highly manoeuvrable sailing ship developed in the 15th century by the Portuguese to explore along the West African coast and into the Atlantic Ocean. The lateen sails gave it speed and the capacity for sailing windward (beating). Caravels were used by the Portuguese and Castilians for the oceanic exploration voyages during the 15th and 16th centuries in the Age of Discovery.
  • 1500


    The coracle is a small, rounded,[1] lightweight boat of the sort traditionally used in Wales, and also in parts of the West Country and in Ireland
  • First navigable submarine

    First navigable submarine
    Is a watercraft capable of independent operation underwater. It differs from a submersible, which has more limited underwater capability. It was invented by Cornelis Drebbel.
  • Galleon

    Galleons were large, multi-decked sailing ships first used as armed cargo carriers by European states from the 16th to 18th centuries during the age of sail and were the principal fleet units drafted for use as warships until the Anglo-Dutch Wars of the mid-1600s
  • Frigate

    Warship built for speed and maneuverability, the description often used being "frigate-built". These could be warships carrying their principal batteries of carriage-mounted guns on a single deck or on two decks
  • East Indiamen

    East Indiamen
    These were built by the various East India companies (Dutch, English or scandinavian) to bring back tea, china, silk and spices. Over the years, the high castles disappeared in favour of a lower beamier shape. In capacity they ranged from 600-1500 tons but the speed remained around 4-5 knots for an average of 120 miles/day.
  • The Starvationer

    The Starvationer
    Is the strange name for one of the most important boats in the history of canals. These long, slender boats were built to serve the Bridgewater Canal in the 1760s, and their design influenced the dimensions of all future narrow boats. What is thought to be the only surviving Starvationer can now be seen as the National Waterways Museum at Ellesmore Port.
  • Full-rigged ship

    Full-rigged ship
    Is a sailing vessel's sail plan with three or more masts, all of them square-rigged. A full-rigged ship is said to have a ship rig or be ship-rigged.
  • Clippers

    In Europe, the Napoleonic wars brought further refinement of square rig sailing configurations. In North America, The Americans designed the clipper as a response to the British naval blockade in the war of 1812. The clipper was developed for speed, often capable of reaching 20 knots, in contrast to the 5-6 knots attained by other cargo ships of the day. It would serve for commerce of Tea (and opium).
  • Dreadnought

    Was the predominant type of battleship in the early 20th century
  • Super-dreadnoughts

    The British Orion class jumped an unprecedented 2,000-tons in displacement, introduced the heavier 13.5-inch (343 mm) gun, and placed all the main armament on the centreline (hence with some turrets superfiring over others). In the four years between Dreadnought and Orion, displacement had increased by 25%, and weight of broadside (the weight of ammunition that can be fired on a single bearing in one salvo) had doubled.
  • Titanic

    Tonnage: 46,328 GRT
    Passenger Capacity: 2,435
  • Battlecruiser

    Was a type of capital ship of the first half of the 20th century. They were similar in displacement, armament and cost to battleships, but differed slightly in form and balance of attributes. Battlecruisers typically had slightly thinner armour and a lighter main gun battery than contemporary battleships, installed on a longer hull with much higher engine power in order to attain greater speeds.
  • Scharnhorst class

    Scharnhorst class
    The Scharnhorst class were the first capital ships. The ships were armed with nine 28 cm (11 in) SK C/34 guns in three triple turrets, though there were plans to replace these weapons with six 38 cm (15 in) SK C/34 guns in twin turrets.
  • Queen Mary Cruise

    Queen Mary Cruise
    Queen Mary sailed on her maiden voyage on 27 May 1936 and won the Blue Riband that August
    Tonnage: 81,237 GRT
    Passenger Capacity: 2,139
  • German battleship Bismarck

    German battleship Bismarck
    Bismarck was the first of two Bismarck-class battleships built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine. The largest battleships ever built by Germany, and two of the largest built by any European power.
  • Yamato class

     Yamato class
    Carried a main battery of nine 18.1-inch (460 millimetre) guns were designed to be a principal strategic weapon
  • Aircraft carrier

    Aircraft carrier
    An aircraft carrier is a warship that serves as a seagoing airbase, equipped with a full-length flight deck and facilities for carrying, arming, deploying, and recovering aircraft. Typically, it is the capital ship of a fleet, as it allows a naval force to project air power worldwide without depending on local bases for staging aircraft operations.
  • Early Containerships

    Early Containerships
    500 – 800 TEU (Six containers across the deck, four containers high on deck)
    Although container ships started operating in the USA in the late 1950s, it was the early 1970s before they became regular visitors to Southampton. Here we look at some of the early vessels of that type to visit the port.
  • SS Ideal X

    SS Ideal X
    A converted World War II T-2 oil tanker, was the first commercially successful container ship.
  • Carnival’s Mardi Gras Cruise

    Carnival’s Mardi Gras Cruise
    The ship was built in 1961 as the ‘Empress of Canada’. She was 27,284 gross tonnes and could accommodate 1,048 passengers.
  • MV Kooringa

    MV Kooringa
    MV Kooringa was the world's first fully cellular purpose-built container ship and was built by Australian company, Associated Steamships Pty. Ltd. in partnership with McIlwraith, McEacharn & Co and commissioned in May 1964. It was built at the New South Wales State Dockyard at Dykes Point, Newcastle as a "custom-designed cellular container ship to handle 20-ton containers".
  • Fully Cellular

     Fully Cellular
    1,000 – 2,500 TEU (10 containers across the deck, five containers high above the deck and four containers below) The first generation (first two shown) were modified bulk vessels or tankers and limited to carrying containers on converted decks. They carried cranes as most port terminals were not equipped to handle containers.
    The next generation, the first fully cellular containerships (FCC), were made in the 1970s.
  • The Panamax

    The Panamax
    3,000 – 3,400 TEU (13 containers across the deck, six containers high above the deck and five containers below)
  • Panamax Max

    Panamax Max
    3,400 – 4,500 TEU (13 containers across the deck, eight containers high above the deck and six containers below) The economies of scale quickly justified the construction of ever-larger containerships. The size limit of the Panama Canal, known as the panamax standard, was set in 1985 at a capacity of around 4,000 TEUs.
  • Sovereign of the Seas

    Sovereign of the Seas
    She sailed on her maiden voyage on January 16, 1988, and was initially based at the Port of Miami. Tonnage: 73,192
    Passenger Capacity: 2,852
  • Carnival Destiny Cruise

    Carnival Destiny Cruise
    The propulsion system consists of six thruster units, three forward and three aft, each with variable-pitch propellers and 1760-kW motors. The electricity for the motors is provided by diesel generators
    Tonnage: 101,353
    Passenger Capacity: 2,642
  • Post Panamax II

    Post Panamax II
    6,000 – 8,000 TEU (17 containers across the deck, nine containers high above the deck and six containers below) The growth of global trade in 1990s justified capacities exceeding the panamax standard and requiring modifications of ports, such as deeper drafts (at least 43 feet) and costly crane systems.
  • Norwegian Epic Cruise

    Norwegian Epic Cruise
    Date launched: July 10, 2009
    Tonnage: 155,873
    Passenger Capacity: 4,100
  • Triple E

    Triple E
    18,000 TEU (23 containers across the deck, 10 containers high above the deck and eight containers below) These exceed the new Panama Canal lock dimensions and are generally limited to routes between Asia and Europe.
  • New Panamax

    New Panamax
    12,500 TEU (20 containers across the deck, 10 containers high above the deck and six containers below) These ships are designed to fit exactly into the Panama Canal's new locks.
  • Quantum of the Seas Cruise

    Quantum of the Seas Cruise
    It’s the second largest class of passenger ships after the Oasis Class, based on gross tonnage. She spent her inaugural season sailing from Cape Liberty in New Jersey, but has relocated to Shanghai, China. During relocation, several changes were made including resizing the casino and modifying menus to include more Asian food.
    Tonnage: 168,666
    Passenger Capacity: 4,905
  • CMA CGM Antoine De Saint Exupery

    CMA CGM Antoine De Saint Exupery
    Named after the French author and aviator Antoine De Saint Exupery, it was built by the Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction, Philippines. It has a capacity of 20,954 TEU which makes it the largest container ship to sail under the French flag.
    It is 400 metres long and 59 metres wide and has a dead-weight of 202684 MT. It was launched in 2017 and entered into service in February 2018 to serve in the French Asia Line , which is the longest sea route connecting Asia to Northern Europe.
  • Madrid Maersk

    Madrid Maersk
    This cargo ship was the first of the eleven Second Generation Maersk Triple E-class containers. Built Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering, it is the second container ship to surpass the 20,000 TEU mark with a capacity of 20,568 TEU. Although the official capacity rating of the ship was set to 19,630 TEU, Maersk Line successfully modified the design resulting in the breaking of the 20,000 TEU mark.
  • MOL Truth

    MOL Truth
    With a deadweight of 189,766 MT and a loading capacity of 20,182 TEU, it operates in the Asia-Northern Europe trade route as part of ‘The Alliance’. The MOL truth has a variety of advanced technologies, such as low-friction hull paint, a high-efficiency propeller and PBCF (*2), a high-efficiency engine plant, and optimized hull shape, which help it in reducing its environmental impact by reduction of CO2 emissions by up to 30%.
  • OOCL Hong Kong

    OOCL Hong Kong
    Is an engineering marvel produced by the firm Orient Overseas Container Line. This lead ship of a series of six G-class ships is the first ship ever to cross the 21,000 TEU mark.
    Constructed by the Samsung Heavy Industries, Geoje shipyard, it has a carrying capacity of 21,413 TEU. With a length of 399.87 metres, breadth of 58.8 metres and a depth of 32.5 metres, it is the largest container ship ever built.
  • COSCO Shipping Universe

    COSCO Shipping Universe
    This giant with a carrying capacity of 21,237 TEU is the largest cargo ship in China. It has a length of 400 metres and is 58.6 metres wide. Built it 2018 by the China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), it was transferred to China Ocean Shipping Company Limited (COSCO).