Taking a peek into maritime history
Seafaring has come a long way. Some noteworthy seafaring activities in history include, the infamous Norse Viking raiders (9th – 11th century) who terrorized and raided coastal cities in Europe, the enterprising Arabs who started the first age of discovery (7th – 13th century) by navigating the seas for trade, and the western age of discovery (15th – 17th century) where European ships went around the world searching for trade, land and riches, of which Christopher Columbus was one of the most famous seafarer of this period.
However, who were the first seafarers?
According to researchers in Canberra and New South Wales, there is evidence of the arrival of immigrants in Australia as early as 60,000 years ago. This meant that the earliest people who crossed the sea in search of new land were prehistoric humans – H. sapiens, before modern civilization started.
However, to get to Australia would mean that the prehistoric seafarer would have had to navigate across hundreds of kilometres of open sea, which would have been practically impossible given the technological and navigation constraints. The reason the prehistoric seafarer was able to make the journey was due to climate change which occurred around 60,000 years ago, causing a glacial period on earth that lowered sea levels and exposed large amounts of land mass. Thus, the prehistoric seafarer was able to make the journey by island-hopping to Australia.
In recent research, there have been varying theories on the routes that the prehistoric seafarer took to Australia. It is by no means an easy feat since they did not have the ship building infrastructure, science and technological knowledge we do today. It also attests to the innate human trait for innovation and problem solving, which the maritime industry works hard to provide to the world at large.
Crewing Online News Team
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