The same term is also used to describe derelict ships found adrift with their entire crew either missing or dead, such as the Mary Celeste or the Baychimo.
It may sometimes also be used to refer to ships which have been decommissioned but not yet scrapped.
Folklore, legends, and mythology
Undated: The Caleuche is a ghost ship which, according to local folklore and Chilota mythology, sails the seas around Chiloé Island, Chile, at night.
1748: The Lady Lovibond is said to have been deliberately wrecked on Goodwin Sands on 13 February and to reappear off the Kent coast every fifty years.
1795 onwards: The Flying Dutchman, a ship manned by a captain condemned to eternally sail the seas, has long been main legend of ghost ships among mariners and has inspired several works.
1858 onwards: The Eliza Battle, a paddle steamer that burned in 1858 on the Tombigbee River in Alabama, is purported to reappear, fully aflame, on cold and windy winter nights to foretell of impending disaster.