Ancient maritime history is adorned with the timeless allure of sailing. From the humble beginnings of rafts and the ingenious construction of boats with frames made of sticks covered in sewn hides, our seafaring ancestors sought to unlock the potential of their vessels for the smooth transport of goods. Among them, the Austronesians, nestled in the vibrant landscapes of Southern China and Taiwan, emerged as true pioneers in the art of sailing.
The Austronesians introduced groundbreaking techniques that revolutionized maritime exploration. Their ingenious inventions, such as catamarans, crab claw sails, and outriggers, pushed the boundaries of possibility and enabled them to venture fearlessly into the open ocean, expanding their horizons and territories between 3000 BC and 1500 BC.
The march of progress in sailing continued steadfastly. The transition from manual paddling to the use of simple oars marked a significant leap forward, and the evolution of oars into poles, widened and flattened for efficient navigation in deep waters, propelled seafaring to new heights. This pivotal shift paved the way for the transformation from oar to paddle, positioned strategically on the sides of boats. The invention of sailing itself was a triumph, unlocking the ability to embark on longer journeys and explore uncharted waters.
In the wake of these innovations, sailing cargo ships took shape, with the ancient Egyptians at the helm of their development. These ships, laden with precious cargo, played a vital role in transporting stones for construction, etching their legacy into the very foundations of civilization.
Yet, it was the Phoenicians who truly set sail into the annals of maritime history. Revered as the pioneers of wooden sailing vessels, they crafted galleys from dugouts, seamlessly integrating sails and oars to harness the power of the winds and waves. Rowers, arranged at different levels depending on the galley's size, propelled these majestic vessels forward, demonstrating the Phoenicians' unparalleled understanding of naval architecture.
As centuries rolled by, a new chapter unfolded in the saga of cargo transportation. To safeguard against water damage, large gallon barrels, aptly named "tons," embraced the cargo and secured its journey. On deck, the crew found respite on commodious leather bags, while passengers sought solace in "steerage," an accommodation denoting simplicity yet enduring allure. Even today, the term "steerage" echoes through time, preserving the essence of a bygone era.
The grand tapestry of maritime history weaves a profound debt of gratitude to the Phoenicians, whose unwavering spirit of innovation propelled sailing and shipbuilding to unprecedented heights. Their enduring legacy reverberates through the ages, shaping the maritime industry that we proudly navigate today.
Today’s marine industry operates in four key areas: naval, commercial, leisure and offshore renewable energy.
SEAGROW comprises these four main sectors & heading towards Innovative Marine Industry to simplified the accessibility of world’s need.