Beden Ship

Not open for further replies.

Merchant of Mogadishu

From Pella to Pattala, then back to Babylon

The Beden', badan, or alternate type names Beden-seyed and Beden-safar, is a fast, ancient Somali single or double-masted maritime vessel and ship, typified by its towering stern-post and powerful rudder. It is also the longest surviving sewn boat in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Its shipyards predominantly lie in the northeastern Hafun region of Somalia (notably Bayla), as well as Muscat. There are 2 types of Beden ships, with one type geared towards fishing (the Beden-seyed) and the other, trading (Beden-safar). The average trading Beden-safar ship measure more than 15 m (49 ft) in length, and are significantly larger than the fishing Beden-seyed ships, which measure 6-15m (20-49 ft) on average, but both are dwarfed by a much larger trading variant called the 'uwassiye, he most common trading and voyaging ship, with some measuring up to 77+ ft. The ship is noticeable and unique in its strengthened substantial gunwale, which attached by treenail . Originally, all Beden ships were sewn with coiled coconut fibre, holding the hull planking, stem and stern-post. but Omani variants, beginning in the 20th century, began nailing instead of sewing the planks.

These were the ships that allowed Somalis to establish and maintain profitable maritime contacts with Arabia, India, Venetia ,Persia, Egypt, Portugal, Ottoman Empire, other parts of Africa and as far away as China. We truly were the great Merchants of the Indian Ocean!
Ay-rabs invented the Beden Ship, Somalis contributed nothing to the world but war and death, all is lost, we need to be phased out as an ethnic group and rendered obsolete, just end me now fam
ending a somalian would do the world a favor but it would also cut into my precious time
You guys are doing quite well on your own, but may like a reference that lays it out from the Omani (Majani) perspective. I cannot explain the encyclopedia references to the "Somali" beden any more than the references to the "Somali" domestication of the camel. Nothing against Somalis, but the evidence doesn't support it: Note Pliny's first century AD comment on the southern Arabs and the incense trade:

"The Sultanate of Oman has been considered as one of the pioneering nations in seafaring. Currently, the large ports at Muscat , Sohar and Salalah have continued this tradition of over-seas trade.

If we look at the historical evidence, the 4500-year-old remains of a Reed Boat, used for trading with India, were found in Ras Al Jinz. Oman popularly known as Majan at that time, had maritime trade links with ancient civilizations as far afield as the ancient cities of Ur and Sumer in Iraq and the Indus Valley in Gujarat, India. Oman was a prosperous country mainly due to the copper trade prevalent in Sohar, Samad A’Shan and Masirah Island among other places. It all happened due to Oman’s excellent boat building capability and marine navigation skills. Over the centuries, Oman’s principal ports and harbours were found all along its coast from khasab with numerous khors and inlets on the Musandam peninsula stretching up to Sohar, Muttrah , Muscat, Qalhat, and Sumharam in Dhofar. Places like Ras Al Hadd, Bandar Al Jissah and Bandar khyran, locked in by mountains or deserts effectively provided protection from rough weather and served as staging posts for sailors. A Sumerian text mentions that the great king Sargon of Akkad boasted that ships from Majan, amongst those from other countries, docked at his wharves .

Towards the last millennium BC, Dhofar witnessed a flourishing trade in frankincense (aromatic gum which was as valuable as gold) with the Kingdom of Sheba, India, Egypt, Rome and China. Frankincense was behind the prosperity of many cities and ports in Southern Oman including Khawr Rawri, Al Baleed and Mirbat. Pottery from Oman was also traded throughout the Arabian Peninsula.

Pliny, the Greek historian writing in the 1st century AD, claimed that the control of the frankincense trade had made the southern Arabs one of the richest people in the world.

By the 8th century, Omani sailor Abu ‘Ubayda’ Abd Allah bin al-Qasim al-Umani, thought to be the fabled Sindbad, had reached China where he set up a merchant community in Canton. The renowned Ahmed bin Majid was master of the sea in the 15th century. He was credited with guiding Vasco Da Gama around the Cape of Good Hope and beyond."


Sultana of Samaroon
Staff Member
I came to this thread seeking knowlegde but I left after seeing self-hating homocidal-suicidal somali youth.:damn:
Ay-rabs invented the Beden Ship, Somalis contributed nothing to the world but war and death, all is lost, we need to be phased out as an ethnic group and rendered obsolete, just end me now fam
Poor Pensive.

Would you like to join the group I funded in Somalia? It's for guys who gave up on Somalia.

We specialize in iisnaaqiis (self-hate) relief.



It was this ship, that my greatgrandfather and his brother used when they left Qandala to settle in Kismayo sometime between 1900-1915 ( during the Seyid's war)
Not open for further replies.


Latest posts