In Egypt, not only have accounts, models and illustrations of ancient rafts and boats survived, but also a number of early vessels have been excavated some dated as early as the 3rd Millennium BC. In regions such as the Americas, on the other hand, where few ancient craft have been excavated, we are able to draw on accounts and illustrations compiled, from the 16th century AD onwards, by European seamen and explorers. In most regions of the world a variety of water transport has been built, limited only by the raw materials available. On the island of Tasmania, however, an early rise in sea levels cut contacts with Australia, leaving Tasmanians with simple types of Stone Age water transport that survived in use until Europeans discovered them.
Worldwide, much remains to be learnt about early water transport by excavation, and by ethnographic studies of those traditional rafts and boats that have survived.
"This volume should prove valuable to both the general reader and the student of archaeology in general… [with] a diffuse approach to its subject in offering concise regional summaries." ~The Society for Nautical Research