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Learn more about our "How to Tie Knots" DVD/CD
July 15th 2018 - 12:44

The Bosunīs Mate Glossary of Terms

The Bosunīs Mate dictionary of Nautical Terms has been compiled from many sources and is constantly being augmented and revised in our attempt to capture as much of the rich yet complicated (and often conflicting) maritime termonology as possible.

You will find an extensive list of information about all sorts of nautical items from sailorīs knots to the sailors themselves, and from ships to the weather patterns of the seas they ply.

Random terms, by category

Abbreviations and Acronyms (41 terms)
AIS
A system for tracking commercial shipping. Ships broadcast digital information regarding their name, home Port, cargo, destination, and other particulars which can then be displayed as an overlay on RADAR when tracking them as a target vessel.

Used largely in VTS systems and by Coast Guard stations.

Form more see our AIS Information page: http://www.bosunsmate.org/ais/

The things sailors do (8 terms)
Avast!
The command to stop, or cease, in any operation.
Why say back when you can say aft instead! (20 terms)
Flower of the Winds
A term for the engraving of the wind-rose on early charts and maps, extended after to include the compass-rose on later charts and maps.
Common sayings and expressions from maritime lore (149 terms)
Jack
A name for the common British naval seaman - Jolly Jack Tar in full. the term is derived from tarpaulin (tared canvas) that was frequently worn by topman as protection against the weather. Initially this name was only applied to able seamen but it was relaxed over time to include all naval seamen.
The foods of the sea (2 terms)
Scurvy
A disease historically common to seaman, caused by lack of Vitamin C the British Navy started to fight it bu adding lime juice to their water - this was the origin of the slan "Limey"
Various knots both functional and ornamental from the nautical to the ornamental and with both historic and present day value. (12 terms)
Sheetbend
A Knot used to tie two ropes of unequal thickness together.

Also known as the weaverīs knot

Bits and bobs from life aboard ship (5 terms)
Skylarking
Playing by climbing around in the Rigging. Especially when done as high as possible.  
Specific sailing maneuvers (33 terms)
wing and wing
A method of running before the wind with two sails set. Usually the Mainsail on one side and the Fore or headsail on the other, or one headsail on each side.

- Incidentally the SALTS logo consists of a Schooner running Wing and Wing

The points of sail and seamanship (76 terms)
Knot
1. A speed of one Nautical mile per hour. (6076 feet) per hour.
2. A method of making a Line Fast to an object, another Line, itself, or for ornament.

The parts of ships (131 terms)
Foredeck
the Forward part of a boatīs main deck
Important people and/or their positions in nautical history (14 terms)
Jack
A name for the common British naval seaman - Jolly Jack Tar in full. the term is derived from tarpaulin (tared canvas) that was frequently worn by topman as protection against the weather. Initially this name was only applied to able seamen but it was relaxed over time to include all naval seamen.
Key locations of the maritime world (20 terms)
Bosunīs Mate
1) The mate (assistant) to the Bosun

2) One of the worldīs foremost nautical web sites bosunsmate.org (you had to know we would do this)

Rigging components and terms (104 terms)
Viol
An older name for the Messenger used to assist in weighing the Anchor.
Sails, their parts and materials (30 terms)
Headsails
The collection of sails (jibs and staysails) foreward of the Foremast.
Types of vessels and some famous examples (22 terms)
Barquentine
3 Masted vessel: Square rigged on Fore Mast only.
The various spars used aboard ship (6 terms)
Yard
A Spar usually fixed horizontally to a Mast that supports a Sail.
The tools of the trade (27 terms)
Bible
A large Holystone
terms awaiting clasification (36 terms)
none found
Meteorology and its relationship to sailing (7 terms)
Fronts
Used in meteorology to describe bounderies between hot and cold air masses. This is typically where bad weather is found.
 
Total Terms: 539 Total Views: 1608580

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