Best Ancient Navies?

Oct 2016
Phoenecians, Carthage, Rome.
Persia and Greece.

don't know much about Phoenecian 'navy' activities but with their fleets and sailors they must have had the material. I'm sure they had anti-pirate forces.

I read somewhere the Romans found a shipwrecked Carthage ship and patterned theirs after. their tactics usually involved getting close to enemy ships and jumping over with sword in hand to settle things land combat way.
eventually the Roman fleet ruled the Med, supplying troops, escorting grain convoys and chasing pirates.
(I guess Carthage was an extension of the Poenecians?)
Oct 2015
Rhodes had a small but highly efficient fleet in the first and second centuries BC. Sulla, Lucullus, Pompey and Caesar all made use of the Rhodian navy in their Eastern campaigns.
Likes: Mangekyou
Jun 2014
That depends on what you mean by "best"? Do you mean the best technology? The largest fleet? Most dominant fleet in it's own time? Who contributed most to understanding of naval architecture and technology and improved understanding of naval mechanics?

Be more specific than the term "best" because the "best" is whatever favorite ancient super power dominated the sea you personally like best.


Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
admitedly with gunpowder
Yi-Sun-sin fleet , by all account a masterful leader of men , defeating the Japanese invasion
he probably would have given any European fleet a run for their money
Likes: Dgranteer
Mar 2018
If you go by the most amount of sea ruled uncontested for the longest, then surely it has to be the Romans? From the 1st punic onwards they simply dominated all mediterranean naval activity. So 600 years if you only count unified Rome, and double that if you include Byzantine.
Likes: Dgranteer
Nov 2011
The Bluff
Far too wide an ambit. Best trireme navy would have to be Athens. Technically and tactically at the top of the tree. Phormio's work in the Gulf of Corinth and Korkyra are some indicators.

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