Illustrated Glossary of Boat and Ship Terms

Illustrated Glossary of Wooden Ship and Boat Terminology

Print on Demand. Self Published by Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit

650 entries / 100 pages / 100 photographs.

£12.50 plus postage


All professions have their own coveted language and linguistic idioms that can often be completely incomprehensible to outsiders. In addition, the jargon derived from specific occupations, just like dialects, can vary from minor spelling and pronunciation to entirely different words being used from one location to another.

Marine activities are not only classic examples around which itemised terminology and particular terms for specific activities have evolved, but a huge amount of the English language and vocabulary has derived from, and is indebted to, historical maritime endeavours over centuries of seafaring.

As a boat builder of 30 years, while fully appreciating all the above, it never ceases to surprise me that words I take for granted, sometime sound like a foreign language to non-maritime individuals. Over the years, particularly when lecturing on ship and boat construction, or when working with colleagues, carrying out marine archaeological investigations associated with the remains of wrecked vessels, it has been apparent that many people lacked the necessary terminology for what they were finding, or any comprehension of the activities that went into the production of the constituent parts of ships and boats.

This book has evolved from a basic set of lecture handouts, into this illustrated glossary of terminology. It is intended to be used as a quick reference guide for anyone interested in marine activities, and wooden ships & boats in particular. Like any assembled lexicon, in this book there will inevitably be some errors and mistakes, particularly with respect to indexing and cross referencing, as well as
alternative spelling and the addition of words that the reader may consider too important to have been overlooked. In this respect, the author would appreciate hearing from anyone who has any thought and comments so that errors and omissions can be corrected at the earliest opportunity

Extract from the Introduction

Full contents here

Research & text: Ian Cundy
Design: Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit
Photographs (unless otherwise stated): Ian Cundy
First Printing: 2020
Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit, Malvern, Worcestershire, WR14 1QQ, United Kingdom


This is an excellent, thorough, logically thought out, detailed and beautifully comprehensive guide, accessable to all, whether professional or an amateur just starting out. 

If just starting out, it gives visual and descriptive impressions which help to give proper form, meaning and placement to any artefacts found, enabling an understanding of their place and function within the whole picture, rather than an isolated piece.

Descriptions are to the point and clear. Illustrations are lavish and clearly labelled.

The index is easy to deal with and the idea of listing illustrated items in red an inspired one.

The references to additional resources is excellent - and you will certainly want to use it, as the guide certainly also inspires the hunger for further knowledge!

The way in which the guide is put together enables anyone who uses it to take in the information offered easily.

If you pay attention, you can also learn the phonetic alphabet, code flags, Morse code, signal flags and sign language as you go! 

Professional, Friendly, Informative and Fun - I cannot praise this publication enough.

Please note that international orders, including Europe, may be subject to additional taxes upon receipt.