Can You Name the Function of These Military Ships?

By: Mark Laufgraben
Image: Heb via Wiki Commons/Wiki Commons

About This Quiz

The world's oceans are vast beyond imagining. Ours is a water world, and the specks of dirt on which we make our homes and live our lives are nothing compared to the inconceivable, endless blue deep. In order to master such a hostile wilderness, we have created mighty navies. Our ships roam the seven seas, striving to gain a mastery over that which will not be tamed. We focus our minds on conquering what we can of the treacherous abyss, and then we turn our thoughts toward struggling among ourselves for whatever scraps of mastery we have gained.

As our technology grows, more and more of our efforts turn toward the latter. How can we defeat the other contenders for control of the world's oceans? The answer we have come to, as in so much of our economic life, is through specialization. We craft weapons and tools of war built for a particular purpose or design, and then wield them with surpassing skill. In the world's navies, then, we have found bespoke tools with a million different uses, each dependent on the makeup of the ships that comprise a fleet. 

What do you know about the world's navies? Can you recognize the jobs and functions of these, the many-headed hydras that we have wrought? Choose among the answers we have given you, but choose wisely. For you will learn what many of the world's captains have learned since the dawn of time: there's no turning back.

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