ISSN 2083-6473
ISSN 2083-6481 (electronic version)




Associate Editor
Prof. Tomasz Neumann

Published by
TransNav, Faculty of Navigation
Gdynia Maritime University
3, John Paul II Avenue
81-345 Gdynia, POLAND
www http://www.transnav.eu
e-mail transnav@umg.edu.pl
Origin and Development of Seamanship Competence
ABSTRACT: Seafaring is one of the oldest documented human activities, with a rich heritage created by generations of seamen. The first boats were developed several thousand years ago, based on primitive principles, and they were probably not suitable for other than simple purposes. Analyzing the history of boat building shows a gradual change in designs. These design changes were most likely due to improvements, related to different aspects of experiences undergone; the changing activity purposes of the boats; and the continual resolution of a conflict between what is possible and what is desired. Nevertheless, design changes and different improvements were developed in a relationship between experiences gained by sailors and shipbuilders. Therefore, the development of seafaring was probably, both directly and indirectly, based on the experiences of sailors who had gained knowledge of the sea. The first written documentation to support the relationship between sailors and knowledge of the sea is in the Old Testament of the Christian Bible, approximately 950 years before Christ. King Solomon of Israel formed an alliance with the Phoenician king of Tyre, Hiram 1, because he needed the Phoenicians’ ships and naval expertise. “And Hiram sent his servants with the fleet, sailors that have knowledge of the sea, along with the servants of Solomon” (1. King IX – 27). The phrase “sailors with knowledge of the sea” correlates with a partial core of seamanship science. The science of seamanship is a multi-dimensional expression, which concerns seamen’s complete competence in sailing and operating a ship. The purpose of this article is to discuss the origin and development of the ship-operating aspects of seamanship and shed light on aspects of the development and challenges regarding exercise of seamanship competence-related maritime education and training (MET).
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Citation note:
Johansen K.: Origin and Development of Seamanship Competence. TransNav, the International Journal on Marine Navigation and Safety of Sea Transportation, Vol. 16, No. 2, doi:10.12716/1001.16.02.19, pp. 363-371, 2022

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