A

David

Darling

canal

A canal is an artificial waterway for irrigation, drainage, navigation, or in conjunction with hydroelectric dams. The first canals were built 4,000 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. The longest canal able to accommodate large ships today connects the Baltic and White seas in northern Europe and is 227 kilometers (141 miles) long. They heyday of canal-building in England was from the late eighteenth to the early nineteenth century.