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South African naval supply ship, Outeniqua (link: Merchant Shipping) U.S. Naval submariners stow away a torpedo (link: Merchant Shipping)

The Merchant Navy provided vital Allied supplies during WWII

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Introduction
Section 1.1
Section 1.2
Section 1.3
Section 1.4
Section 1.5
Section 1.6
Section 1.7
Section 1.8
Section 1.9
Section 1.10
Section 1.11
Section 1.12
Section 1.13
Section 1.14
Section 1.15
Ancient Ships
Ghost Ship of Sutton Hoo
Ancient Greek Ships
Chinese Junks
Section 2.4
Section 2.5
Section 2.6
Section 2.7
Section 2.8
Section 2.9
Section 2.10
Section 2.11
Section 2.12
Section 2.13
Section 2.14
Section 2.15
Golden Age of Shipping
China to the 15th Century
European Golden Age of Shipping
Section 3.3
Section 3.4
Section 3.5
Section 3.6
Section 3.7
Section 3.8
Section 3.9
Section 3.10
Section 3.11
Section 3.12
Section 3.13
Section 3.14
Section 3.15
Merchant Shipping
Section 4.1
Section 4.2
Section 4.3
Section 4.4
Section 4.5
Section 4.6
Section 4.7
Section 4.8
Section 4.9
Section 4.10
Section 4.11
Section 4.12
Section 4.13
Section 4.14
Section 4.15
Yachts and Cruisers
Power Boats
Sailing Boats
Cruise Ships
Section 5.4
Section 5.5
Section 5.6
Section 5.7
Section 5.8
Section 5.9
Section 5.10
Section 5.11
Section 5.12
Section 5.13
Section 5.14
Section 5.15
Criminal Activities
Piracy
Bootlegging
Section 6.3
Section 6.4
Section 6.5
Section 6.6
Section 6.7
Section 6.8
Section 6.9
Section 6.10
Section 6.11
Section 6.12
Section 6.13
Section 6.14
Section 6.15
Ships in Detail
Santa Maria
Mary Rose
Mayflower
Britannia
La Normandie
Empress of Japan
Kungsholm
Crown Of Scandinavia
OOCL Shenzhen
Azel Maersk
Section 7.11
Section 7.12
Section 7.13
Section 7.14
Section 7.15
Racing
Sydney to Hobart Race
Transpacific Race
America's Cup
Section 8.4
Section 8.5
Section 8.6
Section 8.7
Section 8.8
Section 8.9
Section 8.10
Section 8.11
Section 8.12
Section 8.13
Section 8.14
Section 8.15
Pioneers
Zheng He
Vasco de Gama
Christopher Columbus
John Harrison
Ellen MacArthur
Section 9.6
Section 9.7
Section 9.8
Section 9.9
Section 9.10
Section 9.11
Section 9.12
Section 9.13
Section 9.14
Section 9.15
Emergencies and Disasters
Zeebrugge Ferry Disaster
M/S Estonia
Exxon valdez
Lifesavers at Sea
Section 5.5
Section 10.6
Section 10.7
Section 10.8
Section 10.9
Section 10.10
Section 10.11
Section 10.12
Section 10.13
Section 10.14
Section 10.15
Freedom of the Seas
Gallery Page 1
Gallery Page 2
Gallery Page 3
Gallery Page 4
Gallery Page 5
Gallery Page 6
Gallery Page 7
Gallery Page 8
Gallery Page 9
Gallery Page 10
Gallery Page 11
Gallery Page 12
Gallery Page 13
Gallery Page 14
Gallery Page 15
Section 12
Section 12.1
Section 12.2
Section 12.3
Section 12.4
Section 12.5
Section 12.6
Section 12.7
Section 12.8
Section 12.9
Section 12.10
Section 12.11
Section 12.12
Section 12.13
Section 12.14
Section 12.15
Section 13
Section 13.1
Section 13.2
Section 13.3
Section 13.4
Section 13.5
Section 13.6
Section 13.7
Section 13.8
Section 13.9
Section 13.10
Section 13.11
Section 13.12
Section 13.13
Section 13.14
Section 13.15
Section 14
Section 14.1
Section 14.2
Section 14.3
Section 14.4
Section 14.5
Section 14.6
Section 14.7
Section 14.8
Section 14.9
Section 14.10
Section 14.11
Section 14.12
Section 14.13
Section 14.14
Section 14.15
Section 15
Section 15.1
Section 15.2
Section 15.3
Section 15.4
Section 15.5
Section 15.6
Section 15.7
Section 15.8
Section 15.9
Section 15.10
Section 15.11
Section 15.12
Section 15.13
Section 15.14
Section 15.15
The Golden Age of Shipping
The European Golden Age of Shipping

The European golden age of shipping began when it was finally accepted that the world was not flat and that the globe could be divided into horizontal lines of latitude – a massive aid to sailors as they navigated uncharted waters.

The Portuguese – the greatest sea power of the time - were the first to fully realise and exploit the science of latitude in the 15th century and the line of zero latitude was calculated from Portugal’s Madeira Islands.

Both Christopher Columbus and Vasco de Gama had set off on voyages of discovery to India and the Americas by the end of the 15th century and the rest of Europe raced to catch up.

Sir Francis Drake had circumnavigated the globe in England’s name by the latter half of the 16th century and his country began her long rise to prominence as the world’s primary marine power.

A reliable sea-clock, or chronometer, had finally been developed by the Englishman John Harrison by the mid 18th century. Captain James Cook was then able to set out on his missions to explore the Southern hemisphere, mapping the coastline of Australia, New Zealand and much of the Pacific as a result.

During these four centuries of rapid change, the art of ship-building moved on apace and complicated multiple sail technology coupled with stern rudders and stronger frames to create sturdy and fast sea-going vessels that could chart great distances.

Photos: AP
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