Seafaring Lore & Legend: A Miscellany of Maritime Myth, Superstition, Fable, and Fact

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McGraw Hill Professional, 2004 - Transportation - 370 pages
Author Peter Jeans has spent the better part of a decade compiling stories about the sea. Seafaring Lore could possibly be the most complete resource for seafaring myth and legend ever written. In The Beginning explores biblical stories of the great flood, Moses, and the Ark, among others. Legendary Places examines stories surrounding places like the Pillars of Hercules, the Colossus of Rhodes, and the Island of Delos. Legendary Voyages follows voyagers like Sinbad the Sailor, Saint Brendan, and Thor Heyerdahl. Sea Quests of Old revisits such stories as the Odyssey, the Argonauts, and the quest for the Northwest Passage. Nautical History examines the origins of the Royal Navy, naval salutes, and the Beaufort wind scale. This is followed by Nautical Custom, which is devoted to oddities like the getting of grog, traveling POSH, and crossing the line. chanties and scurvy. The Captain and His Ship highlights infamous and noteworthy captains like Captain James Cook, Columbus, and Lord Nelson, among others. Other chapters include A Murmuring of Men, devoted to wrecks and mutiny; Big Ships & Battles, devoted to classics like the Titanic, Queen Mary, and the HMS Dreadnought, Death & Disaster, covering tragedies like the USS Scorpion, RMS Lusitania, and the whaler Essex, and Cast Aways & Survivors, which examines the unbelievable stories of Poon Lim, Crusoe, and John Caldwell, among others. At Odds with the Law relates the stories of William Kid, Anne Bonny, Mary Read, and other buccaneers and pirates. Other chapters trace the legends of mermaids and sirens, ghost ships (like the Mary Celeste and the Flying Dutchman), fabled Atlantis, the Bermuda Triangle, and sea monsters like Kraken and Loch Ness. the origins of unusual beliefs that plagued sailors of the past (as well as others that endure today), like the curse of the albatross, Fiddler's Green, and Saint Elmo's Fire, and even little things that would be bad luck to forget to do before embarking on a voyage, like placing a coin under a ship's mast when it's stepped. Leaving no legend, myth, superstition or fable unturned, Seafaring Lore is sure to be a hit with anyone who has ever wondered about the sea and its enduring mysteries, just as Peter Freuchen's Book Of The Seven Seas was a generation ago.

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Pillars of Hercules Colossus of Rhodes Ultima Thule The Hesperides

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About the author (2004)

Peter Jeans (Perth, Australia) wrote Ship to Shore: A Dictionary of Everyday Words and Phrases Derived from the Sea. He is an avid writer and sailor.

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