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Glossary of nautical terms
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This is a partial glossary of nautical terms; some remain current, while many date from the 17th to 19th centuries. See also Wiktionary’s nautical terms, Category:Nautical terms, and Nautical metaphors in English. See the Further reading section for additional words and references.
1. A sailor. Also jack tar or just tar.
2. A flag. Typically the flag was talked about as if it were a member of the crew. Strictly speaking, a flag is only a “jack” if it is worn at the jackstaff at the bow of a ship.
Sometimes spelled jackass bark, is a sailing ship with three (or more) masts, of which the foremast is square-rigged and the main is partially square-rigged (topsail, topgallant, etc.) and partially fore-and-aft rigged (course). The mizzen mast is fore-and-aft rigged.
A naval stores clerk.
A sailor dressed in ‘square rig’ with square collar. Formerly with a tarred pigtail.
Jacklines or jack stays
Lines, often steel wire with a plastic jacket, from the bow to the stern on both port and starboard. A crewmember clips his safety harness to a jackline, allowing him to walk along the deck while still being safely attached to the vessel.
A man-made wall in open water rising several feet above high tide made of rubble and rocks used to create a breakwater, shelter, erosion control, a channel, or other such purpose.
Debris ejected from a ship that sinks or washes ashore. See also Flotsam.
A triangular staysail at the front of a ship.
A spar used to extend the bowsprit.
The fourth mast, although ships with four or more masts were uncommon, or the aft most mast where it is smallest on vessels of less than four masts.
Traditional Royal Navy nickname for the Royal Marines.
a slender triangular recess cut into the faying surface of a frame or steamed timber to fit over the land of clinker planking, or cut into the faying edge of a plank or rebate to avoid feather ends on a strake of planking. The feather end is cut off to produce a nib. The joggle and nib in this case is made wide enough to allow a caulking iron to enter the seam.
A person (either a sailor or a passenger) who carries a jinx, one whose presence on board brings bad luck and endangers the ship.
1. Old cordage past its useful service life as lines aboard ship. The strands of old junk were teased apart in the process called picking oakum.
2. A sailing ship of classic Chinese design with characteristic full batten sails that span the masts usually on unstayed rigs.
Both the act of rigging a temporary mast and sails and the name of the resulting rig. A jury rig would be built at sea when the original rig was damaged, then it would be used to sail to a harbor or other safe place for permanent repairs.
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Last edited 8 days ago by BG19bot
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