Cool Ship or Boat Names.

Real or fictional, star-, air-, or sea-, funny or unique: come one, come all! Try to avoid macho fist-pumping military names like Dauntless or Intrepid.

Tom Strange, of the ABC comic book Terra Obscura, had a spaceship called Strange Adventure. I’ve always loved this name, and if I ever fulfill my dream of owning a sailboat, that’s what I’ll call it.

In Philip Jose Farmer’s Riverworld books, Sam Clemens had a riverboat called Not For Hire and its launch was called the Post No Bills.

I always liked that the “runabouts” in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine were named after Earth rivers. The Ganges, the Orinoco, the Rubicon were all names of DS9 runabouts.

HMS Surprise has been both a real and a fictional Royal Navy vessel.

When I was in the Navy I found it amusing that so many of our nation’s ships are named after landlocked cities or states.

What’ve y’all got?

The main character in Michael Connelly’s book Blood Work lives on a boat named The Following Sea, which is but one of the many lovely poetic touches in what is otherwise a relatively hard-boiled serial killer story.

Standard disclaimer whenever I mention Blood Work: Please read the book. Please don’t see the movie – before, during, or after reading the book. What Eastwood did to that novel should be prosecutable as some form of rape.

There’s the “Damfino”, Buster Keaton’s ill-fated homemade boat in The Boat (1921).

I’ve always been partial to the classical name “Argo” from Jason and the Argonauts. It conjures up visions of wine dark seas and high adventure. When I get my boat, it will be named Argo!

Will your crew be countless, and screaming?

My fishing boat, being small, clumsy and colourful, was named Clownfish.

I wanted to name our sailboat Dragonfly, but I was outvoted and she was christened SeaBiscuit.

Kerry Dancer from an Alistair MacLean novel.

In the 1950’s the Royal Navy had a patrol vessel called HMS Gay Bruiser.


Rum, sodomy, and the lash, indeed!

Up here a couple of years ago I saw a very nice sailboat. On the stern was Campbell’s Sloop, and it was done in the Campbell’s script.

But the one I really liked was a small open sloop Spiny Norman and I saw as we were kayaking in Marina del Rey. It’s name was Fred. It was the perfect name for that boat.

You mentioned spaceships in your OP, so I’ll continue on that theme with “Heart of Gold” from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Let me guess: it spent most of its time cruising?

The Royal Navy surely has the coolest names.
Victory, Illustrious, Indefatigable, Victoria.

I would be understandably wary of weak lights masquerading as lighthouses.

I’ve always liked the name of Farley Mowat’s yacht, from a pirate ship: Happy Adventure.

As for naming a ship HMS Victoria… it was a good idea, but now I’m not sure I’d want to be on a ship with that name.

Largo’s ship in the James Bond novel and film Thunderball sounds romantic – the Disco Volante.
Translated to English (as they did in the remake, Never Say Never Again it loses a lot of the romance – the Flying Saucer.

Isn’t there a reference somewhere in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the HMS Illustrious, the HMS Dauntless, and the HMS Suicidal Insanity, or something like that?

I’ve got two:

I saw this one while I was fishing in BC - “Irene’s Mink” I have sometimes wondered if she ever did get the mink.

The other featured large in Gerald Durell’s “My Family and Other Animals” - the “Bootle Bumtrinket” . Its portrayal in a BBC adapatation was exactly how I had imagined it to look.

I like the ships (etc.) in Iain M Banks’ culture novels - they’re often named with witty, pithy little phrases like ‘So Much For Subtlety’, ‘Bad For Business’ or ‘It Was Like That When I Got Here’

That’s a remarkable story. The way that the ship ended up embedded the sea floor is astonishing.