Questions tagged [nautical-terms]

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When do you skip the definite article in a ship's name? [duplicate]

Like cars and cities, ships are assumed to be female. Be good to her and she'll take care of you. Thus, even when the name of a ship is masculine, the vessel itself is still a "she." The USS ...
Ricky's user avatar
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8 votes
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Snatch block etymology

Why is the word snatch used in the term snatch block? snatch block — a fairlead having the form of a block that can be opened to receive the bight of a rope at any point along its length. fairlead — ...
User1974's user avatar
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Nautical terms for shortening or lengthening a rope ~ Translation of ‘cazar’ and ‘filar’

Need equivalents for these two Spanish terms: cazar Tirar y acortar la ‘parte útil’ de un cabo, con el fin de aumentar su tensión. ??? To pull and shorten gradually the ‘useful portion’ of a rope in ...
tac's user avatar
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Nautical term used to the small objects of a sail that are passed though the mast ~ Translation of ‘garrucho’

I'm looking for a translation of this nautical term (taken from Spanish): garrucho Objeto cilíndrico ubicado en el grátil de la vela mayor que, al ser pasado por la ranura del mástil, permite que ...
tac's user avatar
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"The Titan submersible lowering into the sea": restrictions on intransitive sense of 'lower'

NY Times caption on page 1 photo for 3 July 2023. "The Titan submersible lowering into the sea". First time I've seen lower used intransitively to correspond to "(non-agentive) ...
TimR's user avatar
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In terms of a location on a ship, is "forward quarter" a correct term or is the term modern slang?

In terms of a location on a ship, is "forward quarter" a correct term or is the term modern slang? A vessel's "quarter" is generally accepted as being the port or starboard stern ...
Steven's user avatar
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6 votes
4 answers

Who are "bully boys" in sea shanties?

In various sea shanties the term "bully boys" comes up now and again. Here for example in The Wellerman, first verse: There once was a ship that put to sea The name of the ship was the ...
fgysin's user avatar
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3 votes
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A word for drain plugs in boats

In row boats, and similar boats, there is a drain plug, which is taken out when it is ashore, to empty for water. In Norwegian the term used is 'nygle', and in Icelandic 'negla'. In contemporary ...
Frode Alfson Bjørdal's user avatar
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An alternative valediction for sailors to “fair winds”

I'm looking for an alternative to signing emails to sailors instead of "fair winds" or "following seas". "Fair Winds and Following Seas” is a gesture of good luck to those we ...
Tex Mitchell's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers

Which phrase attributed to the “cat-o'-nine tails” is the most credible?

In one of many online articles professing the origin of well-known and popular English sayings, I was particularly struck by the one related to "Cat got your tongue". The author writes ...
Mari-Lou A's user avatar
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“Tizzarget Acquizzired”; What's the deal with the Z's when imitating divers?

When imitating scuba divers, especially "old-timey" ones, extra Z's or "izz"es get added to the middle of words. What is the origin of this? I have heard this in a few older shows, including the ...
joedeandev's user avatar
7 votes
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Two nautical terms

In following line by Walt Whitman there are two nautical terms. The pilot seizes the king-pin, he heaves down with a strong arm, After searching I can say that "king-pin" could be a main handle ...
Connoisseur's user avatar