Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Claire Smith

Archaeology and the Emergence of Fields: Maritime

  • Jennifer F. McKinnonEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_1005

Introduction and Definition

Maritime archaeology in its most basic form is the study of material culture related to human interaction with the sea. It involves the study of ships and shipwrecks, maritime infrastructure, maritime exploitation, maritime identities and landscapes, seascapes, and other types of heritage, tangible or intangible, associated with the sea. Related to maritime archaeology is the study of nautical archaeology which primarily focuses on “the ship” and all technical and social aspects of the ship, whether it is on land, underwater, or extant in a museum. Also related to maritime archaeology is underwater archaeology, which is concerned with the archaeology of sites located underwater, regardless of their connection to the sea; it includes not only shipwreck sites but also aircraft wrecks, sunken cities, submerged indigenous habitation sites and refuse sites. Thus, maritime archaeology differs from underwater archaeology in that its focus can be on wet or dry sites...

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Further Reading

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Program in Maritime StudiesEast Carolina UniversityGreenvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of ArchaeologyFlinders UniversityAdelaideAustralia
  3. 3.Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Inc.AdelaideAustralia