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February 27th 2020 - 10:02

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)
LOA
The total lenth of a vesselīs Hull measured from the furthest point Forward the the aftermost part - not including spars that protrude (eg: Bowsprit)
The things sailors do (8 terms)
Luff-up
To steer the Boat more into the wind, this could have the effect of causing the sails to flap or Luff.
Why say back when you can say aft instead! (20 terms)
Bearing
The direction of an object expressed as an agnle in degrees or Compass points from the vesselīs meridian, or , sometimes, from the direction of the Bow, Stern, or Beam.

An answer to the question "Where Away"

Common sayings and expressions from maritime lore (149 terms)
Awning
Canvas spread above the Deck as a protection against the sun or rain
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)
Mathew Walkerīs Knot
If not the only, then one of the few knots named after a person. This is a perminant stopper (or button) Knot that can be tiew with three or more strands. It is oftin tied in the end of a three-lay Rope and can be used as an ornamental finishing for Rope handles or even bell Rope knots.

There is a legend that goes with this Knot: supposidly...

Mathew Walker was a sailor, convicted of some crime, and at his trial the judge offered him clemency if he could demonstrait a Knot that the judge c...
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)
Over-haul
1. To slack a tackle and thereby increase the distance apart of the blocks in that tackle by manually running the Rope backwards through the sheaves.

2. The action of passing another vessel.

3. Sometimes used to refer to a refit of a vessel - inspecting and repaiting propulsion and mechanical systems on Board.

The points of sail and seamanship (76 terms)
Heeling-error
error in the shipīs magnetic Compass caused by the Heel of the Ship. Usualy due to the Ship of the surrounding objectes with respect to the Compass card (which remains level due to its gimball) This may even affect compassī employing correcting magnets as the respective positions will still be affected by the Heel of the vessel.
The parts of ships (131 terms)
Bilge
1. The curve of a vesselīs bottom where it merges into the side.
2. The space in a vessel beneath the sole.

Important people and/or their positions in nautical history (14 terms)
Limey
A nickname for British sailors coined by the Americans. It referrs to the British regulation that all registered ships had to cary a supply of lime juice and issue the same to the crew to prevent Scurvy.
Key locations of the maritime world (20 terms)
Offing
1) The distance a vessel keeps from shore

2) The part of sea viewable in the distance from shore (beyone any Anchorage) any where vessels would navigate.

Rigging components and terms (104 terms)
Raffees
The small light sails set above the skysails on square-rigged masts in light winds.
Sails, their parts and materials (30 terms)
Jib
A triangular Foresail in front of the Foremast.
Types of vessels and some famous examples (22 terms)
Lime-juicers
A nickname for British ships coined by the Americans. It referrs to the British regulation that all registered ships had to cary a supply of lime juice and issue the same to the crew to prevent Scurvy.
The various spars used aboard ship (6 terms)
Bowsprit
A Spar running Forward from the Bow of a vessel. It functions as a horizontal Mast for the spritsail, fore-topmast staysail and, in conjunction with the Jibboom, the Jib.
The tools of the trade (27 terms)
Backstaff
A Navigation instrument used to measure the apparent height of a landmark whose actual height is known, such as the top of a lighthouse. From this information, the shipīs distance from that landmark can be calculated.
terms awaiting clasification (36 terms)
none found
Meteorology and its relationship to sailing (7 terms)
Beaufort Scale
A system for clasifying wind strengths and sea conditions:

1 Light Air Or just sufficient to give steerage way.  
2 Light Breeze Or that in which a man-of-war with all Sail set, and clean full would go in smooth water from. 1 to 2 knots
3 Gentle Breeze 3 to 4 knots
4 Moderate Breeze 5 to 6 knots
5 Fresh Breeze Or that to which a well-conditioned man-of-war could just carry in chase, full and by. Royals.
6 Strong Breeze Single-reefed topsails and top-gal. Sail
7 Moderate Ga...
 
Total Terms: 539 Total Views: 1793711

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