“The Sea and Civilization:
A Maritime History of the World”
By Lincoln Paine in 2013
Atlantic Books, 2015
New book in my sea library. Can’t wait to finish the ones I’m reading right now, so I could get back on a clean springboard, jump and dive into the maritime history of the world. Lincoln Paine is a maritime historian, author, editor, and curator from America. His other books include Ships of the World: An Historical Encyclopedia; Ships of Discovery and Exploration; Warships of the World to 1900 and Down East: A Maritime History of Maine. Loved to read on his homepage that all his daughters happen to be named for ships.
From the back cover of the book:
“The Sea and Civilization” is a monumental retelling of world history through the lens of maritime enterprise, revealing in breathtaking depth how people first came into contact with one another by ocean and river, lake and stream, and how goods, languages, religions and entire cultures spread across and along the world’s waterways, bringing together civilizations and defining what makes us most human.
From the origins of long-distance migration by sea our ancestors’ first forays from Africa and Eurasia to Australia and the Americas, to the enormous demographic, cultural and political changes brought about by commercial shipping and naval warfare through the post-Cold War era, Lincoln Paine shows how the rise and fall of civilizations can be linked to the sea.”
“In contrast to most books on maritime history, the majority of The Sea and Civilization covers the history of the world before Columbus sailed the ocean blue and at least as much of the narrative focuses on Asia as it does on Europe,” writes Ben Wilson from The Daily Telegraph.
I will write my own review hopefully in 2017 as I’m a purposefully slow reader and avid notetaker, but I believe I will learn a lot from Paine, how to write a book with an encyclopedic scope.