An engaging and vivid read by author and naval historian Brian Lavery, The Conquest of the Ocean tells the 5,000 year history of the remarkable individuals who sailed the seas for trade, to conquer new lands, and to explore the unknown. From the early Polynesian sailors to the first circumnavigations by the Portuguese and the British, The Conquest of the Ocean explores the lives of these sailors and their tales of epic sea voyages, great feats of seamanship, navigation, endurance, and ingenuity. Explore the lives of famous land-seekers and globe-charters such as Christopher Columbus, Captain James Cook, and Vitus Bering through eyewitness accounts of their maritime adventures. Full color photographs, paintings, diagrams, and maps are woven into the text to help tell the compelling stories of life at sea that lie behind man's search for new lands, new trade, conquest, and uncharted waters. From the conquest of Mexico to World War II, and the voyages of the Vikings to the Exxon Valdez crisis, The Conquest of the Ocean covers the history of ships and sailing in times of exploration, war, discovery, and disaster.