From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Webster's Dictionary [1]

(1): ( n.) the science or art of conducting ships or vessels from one place to another, including, more especially, the method of determining a ship's position, course, distance passed over, etc., on the surface of the globe, by the principles of geometry and astronomy.

(2): ( n.) Ships in general.

(3): ( n.) The management of sails, rudder, etc.; the mechanics of traveling by water; seamanship.

(4): ( n.) The act of navigating; the act of passing on water in ships or other vessels; the state of being navigable.

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [2]

See Ship.

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [3]

The situation of Palestine on the Mediterranean, and the navigable inland sea of Tiberias, accounts for the frequent allusions in Scripture to ships and navigation. In the Old Testament only the Mediterranean commerce is spoken of, especially that of Palestine and the neighboring coasts; for Joppa in Philistia ( Jonah 1:3;  2 Chronicles 2:16; comp.  2 Maccabees 12:3) and Tyre in Phoenicia ( Isaiah 33:1; Ezekiel 27; comp.  Acts 21:7) were in ancient times famous ports for the ships of distant nations ( סוֹחֵר אַנַיּוֹת ,  Proverbs 31:14), and afterwards became the chief marts of Phoenician commerce. The Israelites soon became acquainted with the Phoenicians by coasting voyages ( 2 Chronicles 2:16), and the tribes of Zebulon ( Genesis 49:13), Dan, and Asher ( Judges 5:17) seem to have been especially active in trade. After the Edomitish ports Elath and Eziongeber were conquered and annexed to his kingdom, Solomon established a commerce there, which Jehoshaphat afterwards endeavored in vain to revive. In the days of the Maccabees, Joppa was a Jewish seaport ( 1 Maccabees 14:5); but Herod the Great: opened Caesarea, a larger and better harbor (Josephus, War, 3:9, 3). Yet even then the Jews had no commerce of their own. The merchant fleets of Babylon are mentioned ( Isaiah 43:14), the ships of Tarshish ( Isaiah 23:1), and the reed-boats of the Nile ( Isaiah 18:2). Many of the scenes of the Gospels are on the shore of the Sea of Genesareth, where afterwards the Jews had 230 ships, with four men in each (Josephus, War, 2:21, 8). Jesus stood in one of the fishing-boats, and preached to the people on the shore ( Matthew 13:2;  Luke 5:3). He crossed the lake repeatedly ( Matthew 8:23;  Matthew 9:1;  Matthew 14:13 sq.;  John 6:17). Some of his first, disciples were owners of such boats ( Matthew 4:21;  John 21:3;  Luke 5:3). The vessels of the Egyptians (Diod. Sic. 1:57) and Phoenicians were adorned with brass, purple streamers, etc. The ships of Tyre were the most stately, and the most highly ornamented (Ezekiel 27; comp. Camenz, De Nave Tyria, Viteb. 1714). The deck was of cypress wood; the masts were pine (or cedar) trees ( Σκεῦος ,  Acts 27:17, according to Kuinil, ad loc.); the sails were of the Egyptian byssus, colored variously (comp.  Ezekiel 27:7, and Havernick, ad loc.).

The oars were of oak ( Ezekiel 27:6). Tackling and rudder are not expressly mentioned, though some (as Umbreit) find the latter in הַבֵּל ( Proverbs 23:34). Others understand it of the mast (see Gesen. Thes. 1:440). But in the New Testament the rudder or helm ( Πηδάλιον ) is mentioned ( James 3:4;  Acts 27:40; in which latter passage it must be remarked that the larger ships had two rudders, one at each end; AElian, V.T. 9:40; Hygin. A Stron. 3:36; comp. Fab. 14; Heliod. Aeth. 5:22; comp. Deyling, Observat. 1:295 sq.). Some had even four, two on each side (see Tacitus, Annal. 2:6). The 27th and 28th chapters of Acts inform us in several particulars of the equipment of the larger merchant vessels in the Roman period. It was a "ship of burden" in which Paul was taken to Rome. But the ships of burden were built rounder and deeper than the ships of war (Caesar, Bell. Gall. 4:22, 25), and sometimes extraordinarily large (Cicero, Fam.); therefore used only on the sea and large streams (Pliny, 6:36), and were driven more by sails than by oars, whereas the ships of war always had from two to five rows (banks) of oars, or even more; hence called biremes, triremes, etc. ( Τριήρεις ,  2 Maccabees 4:20). On the pointed projecting front was the prow, carrying the figure- head ( Παράσημον ,  Acts 28:11), from which the ship was named (see Tacit. Ann. 6:34; Ovid, Trist. 1:10, 1 sq.). But th3 image of the guardian deity stood on the stern (puppis, Virgil, Aen. 10:156 sq.; Silv. Italicus, 14:410; Eurip. Iphig. Aul. 240 sq.).

Sometimes the figurehead ( Παράσημον ) may have been the statue of the god (comp. Herod. 3:37 sq.; Ovid, .Metanz. 3:617). Each ship had a life-boat ( Σκάφη ,  Acts 27:16;  Acts 27:30;  Acts 27:32; comp. Cicero, Invent. 2:51), several anchors ( עוגין Mishna, Baba-Bathra, 5:1) fastened with ropes (Arrian, Alex. 2:4, 8;  Acts 27:29;  Acts 27:40; comp. Caesar, Bell. Civ. 1:25; Josephus, Life, 33), and the sounding-line ( Βολίς , comp.  Acts 27:28) to measure the depth in places where they wished to cast anchor. Among the sails, one in particular was called Ἀρτέμων ( Acts 27:40; Auth. Vers. "mainsail"), which was spread when a moderate force of wind was desired (comp. Schol. ad Juv. 12:68), but its exact position cannot be determined. Modern writers understand it to be the "topsail." The girding the ship with strong cables, to prevent her from dashing to pieces on thee rocks ( Acts 27:17), is often mentioned by ancient writers (Polyb. 27:3, 3; Horace, Od. 1:14, 6 sq.; see Scheffer, Milit. Nav. 2:5). The various expedients of mariners, when danger threatened the ship, are vividly described in Acts 27. First, they lightened the ship ( Acts 27:19), then tried to reach the shore in the boats; then threw the freight into the sea ( Acts 27:38; comp.  Jonah 1:5), and the crew and passengers floated to the shore on boards and fragments of the wreck ( Acts 27:44). The Master of a transport was called Ναύκληρος ( Acts 27:11), and was generally a different person from the pilot, Κυβερνήτης (see Cicero, Inv. 2:51).

The former is called רֵב הִחֹבֵל ( Jonah 1:6), which some would render Gubernator, "pilot." The crew are called in Hebrew מִלָּחַים ( Ezekiel 27:9;  Ezekiel 27:26;  Ezekiel 27:29;  Jonah 1:5), from whom the steersmen ( חֹבְלַים .  Ezekiel 27:27;  Ezekiel 27:29) are distinguished. The Sept. renders the former by Κωπηλάται , Rowers, the latter by Κυβερνῆται , pilots; perhaps correctly. The ancients, by keeping close to the shore, and following all its sinuosities, in early times made their voyages very long (comp.  1 Kings 10:22). The same custom is said still to prevail on the Red Sea (Niebuhr, Trav. 1:258; Irwin, Trav. pages 100, 126 sq.). When they ventured out on the high seas, they were guided, having no compasses, by certain well-known stars, as the Pleiades, the Great and the Lesser Bear, Orion, etc. (Odys. 5:272; Polyb. 9:14-17; Virgil, AEn. 3:201 sq.; Ovid, Met. 3:594 sq.; Arrian, Alex. 6:26, 9). But the Greek and Roman mariners used to call upon the Dioscuri, Castor and Pollux, for deliverance from peril, these being universally considered the tutelary deities of navigation. Through dread of winter storms, ancient navigation was confined to the summer months ( Acts 27:9; Philo, Opp. 2:548). The Romans considered the sea open from March to the time of the equinox (Veget. Mil. 5:9; Propert. 1:8, 9; Caesar, Gal. 4:36; 5:23), and ships which were under way at harvest-time sought a safe harbor for winter-quarters ( Acts 27:12). See also Schlozer, Vers. Einer Allge. Gesch. D. Landels U. Der Schiahrt In Den Aeltesten Zeiten (Rostock, 1760); Le Roy, La Marine Des Anciens Peuples (Paris, 1777); Berghaus, Gesch. D. Schiffahrtskunde Bei D. Vorn. Volk. D. A1Terth. (Leips. 1792); Benedict, Vers. D. Gesch. D. Schiff. U.D. Hand. Bei D. Alten (Leips. 1809); Baumstark, s.v. Navigatio u. navis, in Pauly's Real-Encyklop. 5:428 sq. (See Ship).

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [4]

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