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Hail - To speak to a ship at sea by signals or otherwise. To attract the attention of a ship by singing out "Ship ahoy!" or "Neptune ahoy." To "hail from" a locality is to belong to a particular place by birthright.

Half-breadth Plan - A drawing showing the horizontal sections or waterlines of a vessel by halves.

Half-breadths - The width of horizontal sections at particular points; also half-breadths on diagonal lines.

Hall-mast High - Hoisting a burgee or ensign only halfway up as a mark of respect to a person who has recently died.

Halyards - Lines used to hoist or lower sails or flags and the wooden spars (boom and gaff) that hold the sails in place.

Hammock - A canvas bed swung to the deck beams.

Hand - To hand a sail is to stow, furl, or take in; hence a sail is said to be "handed" when either of these operations has been performed.

Hand - A man. A member of a ship's crew.

Handing a Sail - To hand a sail is to stow it or take it in.

Hand Lead - See "Lead."

Handle Her - The act of controlling the movements of a vessel. An admonition to the crew to be smart in working the sheets in tacking or gybing. Also a steamboat master is said to "handle" his vessel in bringing her alongside a wharf. pier.

Hand over Hand, Hand over Fist - Hauling on a rope by one hand at a time and passing one hand rapidly over the other to haul. A very rapid way of hauling, hence anything done rapidly is said to be done "hand over hand."

Handsomely - Steadily; with care. Not too fast nor yet too slow, but with great care; cleverly. As "Lower away handsomely." In easing up a sheet, if the man is likely to let it fly, the master or mate will sing out, "Handsomely there!" meaning that the man is to ease up the sheet carefully, not letting too much run out, nor yet letting it come up with a jerk, nor yet allowing it to run away with him.

Handspike - A bar of wood, used as a lever.

Hand Taut - As tight or taut as a rope can be got by the hand without swigging upon it.

Handy - A vessel is said to be handy when she answers her helm quickly, and will turn in a small circle, or go from one tack to the other quickly.

Handy Billy - A watch tackle kept on deck for general use to get a pull on whatever is required, such as sheets, tacks, or halyards.

Hang - To lean towards. To hang to windward is to make but little leeway. "Hang on here!" an order for men to assist in hauling.

Hanging Compass - A compass suspended under the beams with the face of the card downwards; termed also a "Telltale Compass."

Hanging Knee - Knees that help keep the beams and frame together ; one arm is bolted to the under side of a beam, the other to the frame.

Hank for Hank - Slang for "tack for tack."

Hanks - Rings or hooks made of rope, wood, or iron for fastening the luff of sails to stays.

Harbour Watch - The watch kept on board a vessel at night when she is riding to an anchor in harbour; the anchor watch. Harbour or Anchor Watches are often 12 or 24 hours in duration allowing the other crew members moe time to go ashore.

Hard - A landing place, usually made of gravel placed in piles across soft ares where the small boats land.

Hard Chine - An abrupt intersection between the hull side and the hull bottom of a boat so constructed.

Hard Down - The order to put the helm hard-a-lee. Also the tiller may be put hard-a-port; hard-a-starboard; hard-a-weather; hard up.

Hard In - Sheets are said to be hard in when a vessel is close-hauled.

Hard Up - The tiller as far to windward as it can be got for bearing away.

Harpings - Pieces of timber or battens that are fitted around the frames of a vessel in an unbroken line to keep the frames in their places before the plank is put on.

Hatch - an opening in the deck for entering below.

Hatch Covers - the coverings for hatchways

Hatchway Coamings - The raised frame above the deck upon which the hatches or hatch covers rest.

Haul - To pull on a rope.

Haul Aft the Sheets - The order to haul in the sheets for close-hauled sailing.

Haul Her Wind - To become close-hauled after sailing free. Generally to sail closer to the wind when sailing free. Haul to the wind. Haul on the wind.

Haul Round a Mark, Point - When a vessel in sailing free has to come closer to the wind as her course alters round a point or buoy. By hauling in the sheets the vessel will sometimes luff sufficiently without any help from the helm.

Haul the Boom Aboard - An order to get the main boom hauled in on the quarter for close-hauled sailing.

Haul Up - To hoist a sail. A vessel is said to "haul up" when she comes, or is brought nearer the wind or nearer her course if she has been sailing to leeward of it. Haul up a point, haul up to windward of that buoy.

Hawse Bags - Canvas bags filled with oakum, used in a heavy sea to stop the hawse holes, and prevent tile admission of water. Wooden hawse plugs are generally used in a yacht.

Hawse Pipe - The pipes in the hawse holes in the bow through which the cables pass.

Terms relating to the Hawse

"A bold hawse," signifies the holes are high above the water. [This would be equivalent to saying that the ship was high at the bows.]

"Veer out more cable" is the order when a part of the cable which lies in the hawse is fretted or chafed, and by veering out more cable another part rests in the hawse.

"Fresh the hawse" is an order to lay new pieces upon the cable in the hawse to preserve it from fretting. [The above two terms are applied to hemp cables.]

"Burning in the hawses" is when the cables endure a violent stress.

"Clearing the hawses" is the act of disentangling two cables that come through different hawse.

"To ride hawse full" is when in stress of weather a ship falls with her head deep in the sea, so that the water runs in at the hawse.

"Athwart hawse" is when anything crosses the hawse of a ship close ahead, or actually under and touching the bows

"Cross hawse," when the cables out 'of different holes cross on the stem as an X. Distinct from "clear hawse," which is when each cable leads direct to the anchor from its hawse hole.

"Foul hawse," when the cables are crossed in any way by the ship swinging round.

Hawser - A large rope laid up with the sun or right-handed.

Hawse Timbers - The large timbers in the bows of ships in which the hawse holes are cut.

Head - The fore part of a vessel. The upper part of a sail. For a triangular sail, the top corner. "By the head" means pressed or trimmed down by the head, in contradistinction of "by the stern." To head is to pass ahead of another vessel. Also a marine toilet.

Head Earings - The earings of the upper part of a squaresail,

Headfoil - a grooved rod fitted over the forestay to provide support for luff of hte sail or help support the forestay

Head Knocker - A block with a jam cleat, located on the boom and used to control the main sheet on small boats.

Heading - The direction in which a vessels's bow points at any given time.The direction of a vessel's head when sailing. Generally used when sailing close hauled, as "she headed S.E. on port tack, and N.E. on starboard tack." In such cases it is never said she "steered S.E.," as practically the vessel is not steered, but her course alters with the wind. A vessel "steers" such and such a course when she is sailing with the wind free.

Headland - A high cliff or point.

Headmost - The first in order.

Head Reach - In sailing by the wind when a vessel passes another either to windward or to leeward. A vessel is said to "head-reach" when she is hove to, but forges ahead a knot or two. (See "Fore-reach.")

Head Rope - The rope to which the head of a sail is sewn.

Headsails - A general name for any sail foreward of the foremast.

Head Sea - The sea met when sailing close-hauled. In the case of a steamship she may meet the sea stem on.

Heed Sheets - The sheets of the head sails.

Head to Wind - When a vessel is so situated that the wind blows no more on one bow than the other; when her head is directly pointed to the wind.

Headway - Forward motion of boat through the water; opposite to sternway

Head Wind - A wind that blows directly down the course a vessel is desired to sail. A foul wind. To be headed by the wind is when the wind shifts so that a vessel cannot lie her course, or puts her head off to leeward of the course she had been heading.

Heart - A sort of deadeye made of lignum vitae with one large hole in it to pass a lanyard through turn after turn instead of through three holes, as in an ordinary deadeye. They are something like a heart in shape, and the lower one is metal bound; the stay goes round the upper one either by a spliced eye or an eye seizing; also used for jib sheet.

Heart Thimble - A thimble shaped like a heart put in the eye splices of ropes. These are usually made solid for rigging screws.

Heave - To bring a strain or drag upon a capstan bar, purchase, &c. To throw, as "heave overboard."

Heave About - To go into stays to tack.

Heave Ahead - To draw a vessel ahead by heaving on her cable, warp, &c.

Heave and Pawl - In heaving on the windlass or capstan to give a sort of jerking heave, so that the pawl may be put in, and so prevent "coming up," or the cable flying out again. Also, in heaving on the mast winches "heave and pawl" is generally used in the sense of "belay;" that is stop heaving at the next fall of the pawl.

Heave and Rally - An order to encourage the men to heave with energy when there is a difficulty in breaking the anchor out of the ground.

Heave and Sight - A call given after the anchor is off the ground, and when it is known to be near the surface on account of the muddy condition of the water it is making in consequence of the mud on the flukes. Literally it means one more heave and you will see the anchor above water.

Heave and Stand to your Bars! - An order given after heaving until the vessel is over the anchor to give another heave as the bow descends with the sea and then stand fast, as in all probability the next time she descends, or lifts, her head with the sea she will break the anchor out of the ground.

Heave and Weigh.-- The last heave of the capstan that breaks the anchor out.

Heave Down - To careen a vessel by putting tackles on her mastheads from a hulk or wharf, and heeling her so as to get at her aide which was under water for repairs. A vessel is said to be hove down by a squall when she does not right immediately.

Heave in Stays - The same as heave about.

Heave Short - To heave on the cable until the vessel is over the anchor, or the cable taut in a line with the forestay, so that with another heave, or by the action of the sails, the anchor will be broken out of the ground.

Heave the Lead - The order to cast the lead for sounding.

Heave the Log - The order to throw the log ship overboard to test the rate of sailing.

Heave To - To so trim a vessel's sails aback that she does not move ahead. The same as "lie to" or "lay to" as sailors call it. If the gale be a fair one the ship usually scuds before it; if a foul one she heaves to.

Heel - The lower after end of anything, as heel of the keel, heel of the mast (the fore part of the lower end of a mast is called the toe), heel of a yard, heel of the bowsprit. The amount of list a vessel has.

Heeler - A heavy puff that makes a boat heel.

Heel Rope - The rope by which a running bowsprit or topmast is hauled up or out.

Heel, To - To incline, to careen, to list over, to depart from the upright.

Height - A distance measured in a vertical direction, as height of freeboard.

Helm - The apparatus for steering a vessel, usually applied only to the tiller. The word is derived from Saxon helma or healma, a rudder; German helm, a handle and a rudder.

Helmsman - Sailor who steers the boat. If a sailor can sail a vessel well on a wind he is generally termed a good "helmsman," and not steersman.

Helm's A-lee - The usual call made in tacking or in going about, as a signal for the crew to work the sheets, &c. The helm is a-lee when the tiller is "put down" or to leeward. (See "Lee Helm" and "Weather Helm.")

Helm Port - The rudder trunk in the counter.

Helm, to Port the - To put the helm or tiller to the port side, and thereby bring the vessel's head round to starboard. If a wheel is used besides a tiller the action of turning the wheel to port brings the vessel's head round to port, as the tiller is moved by the chains to starboard. Thus with a wheel, when the order is given to port the wheel is turned to starboard.

Helm, to Put Down the - To put the tiller to leeward and thereby bring the vessel to the wind, or luff; the contrary action to putting up the helm.

Helm, to Put Up the - To bring the tiller to windward, so that the rudder is turned to leeward, and consequently the head of the vessel goes off to leeward or "off the wind."

Helm, to Starboard the - To put the tiller the way opposite to port.

Helm, to Steady the - To bring the helm or tiller amidships after it has been moved to port or starboard, as the case may be.

Hermaphrodite Brig - A two-masted vessel, square-rigged forward, and fore-and-aft canvas only on mainmast, usually called a brigantine.

Hermaphrodite Hull - Usually wooden planked hull over metal ribs.

High and Dry - The situation of a vessel that is ashore when the ebb tide leaves her dry.

High Water: Full and Change - On all coast charts the time of high water at the full moon and new moon is set down, the time of high water at the full moon and new moon always occurring at the same hour throughout the year; therefore, if the time of high water at full and change (new moon) is known, and the age of the moon, the time of high water for any particular day can be roughly calculated, about twenty-five minutes being allowed for each tide.

Hiking Stick - An extension of the tiller that enables the helms man to sir at a distance from it.

Hipping - To make a vessel broader on the beam about the waterline.

Hitch - A knot used to secure a rope to another object or to another rope, or to form a loop or a noose in a rope. A hitch is also a short tack or board made in close-hauled sailing.

Hogged - The situation of a vessel when she rises higher in the middle part than at the ends; the opposite of sagged.

Hogging Piece - A piece of timber worked upon top of the keel to prevent its hogging or rising in the middle.

Hoist - The length of the luff of a fore-and-aft sail, or the space it requires for hoisting. The hoist of a flag is the edge to which the roping is stitched. To raise anything by halyards or tackles.

Hold - A compartment below deck in a vessel, used solely for carrying cargo.

Hold a Good Wind - To sail close to the wind.

Hold her Head Up - A vessel is said to "hold her head up" well that does not show a tendency to fall off.

Holding On - To continue sailing without altering a course or shifting sail.

Holding On to the Land - To keep the land aboard in sailing; not departing from the land.

Holding Water - Resting with the blades of the oars in water to check a boat's way or atop her.

Hold On - The order given after hauling on a rope not to slack any up, as "Hold on all that."

Hold On the Fore Side - If, when hauling on the fall of a tackle, some of the hands have hold of it on the tackle side of the belaying pin, the hand that has to belay sings out, "Hold on the fore side" to those in front of him, and "Come up behind" to those behind. The hands on the fore side thus hold the fall and keep it from running through the blocks whilst it is being belayed.

Hollow Lines - The horizontal lines of a vessel that have inflections.

Home - Any operation that is completely performed, as "sheeted home" when the clew of a sail is hauled out to the last inch, &c. An anchor is said to come home when it breaks out of the ground.

Hood - A covering for skylights, sails, &c.

Hood Ends - The ends of the plank which are fitted into the rabbet of the stem or stern poet; termed also the hooded ends, meaning probably that they are "housed" or covered in by the rabbet.

Hooker - A small coasting craft.

Horizontal Lines - The curved lines on the Half breadth Plan which show the water lines, the plane of each section being parallel to the horizon.

Horns - The projections which form the jaws of gaffs or booms. The outer ends of the crosstrees are sometimes termed horns.

Horn Timbers - Timbers which help support the counter.

Horse - A bar of iron or wood, or a rope for some part of a vessel's rigging to travel upon, such as the mainsheet.

Hounds - The projections on a mast which support the lower cap, cross trees, and rigging.

House - To lower a topmast down within the cap.

Housing of a Mast - The part under the deck.

Hove Down - Said of a vessel that is very much careened or heeled by the wind or other cause.

Hove her Keel Out - Said of a vessel that heels over, so as to show her keel. (Generally used only as a figure of speech.)

Hove in Sight - To come into view; said of a sail that appears above the horizon or round a headland; also of the anchor when it comes above water.

Hove in Stays - Said of a vessel when she tacks, often meaning that a vessel tacks suddenly.

Hove Short - When the cable is hove in so that there is but little more length out than the depth of water.

Hove-to - The condition of a vessel with her head sails aback, so as to deprive her of way. Vessels hove-to on port tack should fill or get way on, if approached by a vessel on the starboard tack; but if the vessel on port tack can, by hailing or otherwise, make the other vessel understand the situation, the latter should give way; this is the custom of the sea, but there is no statutory regulations concerning the point.

Hoy - A small vessel. Also an abbreviation of "Ahoy."

Hug the Land - To sail along as close to a weather shore as possible.

Hug the Wind - To keep very close, or too close to the wind.

Hulk - A vessel whose seagoing days are over, but is still useful as a store ship.

Hull - The main body of a vessel less its spars and rigging


Immersed - Underwater. The opposite of emersed, which means taken out of water. The "wedge of immersion" is the part of a vessel put into the water when she heels over. The wedge of emersion is the part taken out of the water. Sometimes termed the "in" and "out" wedges.

In - The prefix to a curt order to take in a sail, as "In spinnaker," "In squaresail," or "In boats

In and Out Bolts - Bolts that pass through the skin and frame of a vessel through and through.

Inboard - lnside a vessel's bulwarks, being the opposite to outboard.

In and Out Bolts - Bolts that pass through the skin and frame of a vessel through and through.

Inspection Port - A watertight covering, usually small, that may be removed so the interior of the hull can be inspected or water removed.

Inshore - Close to the shore

In the Wind - When sailing close hauled, if a vessel comes to nearly head to wind she is said to be "all in the wind."

In Wale - The clamp or strake of timber inside the top strake of a small boat, generally termed the gunwale.

Irish Pennants - Loose ends of ropes, hanging about a vessel's rigging or sails.


Jack, Hydraulic - A mechanical contrivance used for the same purpose as a screw jack.

Jack in the Basket - A boom or pole with a cage on the top used to mark a shoal or bank.

Jack Screw or Screw Jack - A powerful screw used for moving heavy weights.

Jack Stay - A rod of steel shaped as a railway metal, or a rope, usually wire rope, for sails or yards to travel on. Also the steel railway or wire rope stay on the boom of laced sails on which the hanks or lacings are attached.

Jack Yard - The small yard on the foot of large topsails to extend them beyond the gaff. Termed also jenny yards and foot yards.

Jack Yard Topsail - A topsail set on two yards.

Jacobs Ladder - A rope ladder, lowered from the deck, as when pilots or passengers come aboard.


Jam - In belaying or making fast a rope to close up or jam the turns

Jaws of a Gaff - The horns at the end of the gaff which half encircle the mast. A rope called a "jaw rope," or jaw parrel, is fitted to the ends of the horns, and, passing round the mast, keeps the gaff in its place. Wood beads are rove on the rope to make it slide easily on the mast.

Jenny Yard - See "Jack Yard."

Jettison - To throw cargo overboard.

Jetsam - Goods thrown overboard in heavy weather to lighten the ship.

Jetty - A structure, usually masonry, projecting out from the shore; a jetty may protect a harbor entrance.

Jettison - To throw overboard.

Jib - A triangular foresail in front of the foremast. There are No.1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 jib, the latter being the storm or spitfire jib.

Jibb or Jibe - See "Gybe."

Jib-boom - The spar beyond the bowsprit in schooners upon which the outer jib is set.

Jib Foresail - In schooners the stay-foresail. (See "Fore-staysail.")

Jibheader - An abbreviation of the term jibheaded topsail. A thimble-headed topsail. The triangular topsail of a fore and aft vessel.

Jib Stay - In schooners the stay to which jibs are hanked.

Jib Topsail - A triangular headsail made of light canvas set upon the topmast stay above the jib.

Jib Traveller - The iron hoop, with hook and shackle, on the bowsprit to which the jib tack cringle is hooked.

Jiffy reefing - A fast method of reefing. Lines pull down the luff and the leech of the sail, reducing its area.

Jigger Mast - The mizzen mast of yawl or dandy.

Joggle - In the shipwright's craft, carpentry, and masonry, a notch or notches forming a box scarf to enable two pieces of wood. To fit together. The heels of timbers are sometimes joggled to the keel in this manner.

Joggles - Notches cut in a boat's timbers for the plank to fit into.

Join Ship - To come on board a vessel, or to enter as a seaman on board.

Jolly Boat - A yacht's boat larger than a dinghy, and not so large as a cutter. Used by a merchant ship much the same as a dinghy by a yacht.

Jolly Roger - A pirate's flag. A white skull and cross bones on a black field.

Jumpers - The main stays of schooners when they lead forward to the fore deck.

Jumper Stay - A short stay supporting the top forward portion of the mast. The stay runs from the top of the mast forward over a short jumper strut, then down to the mast, usually at the level of the spreaders.

Jumbo - The larger of the headsails.

Junk - A Chinese ship. Also old rope. Also old salt beet as tough and hard as old rope.

Jury - A makeshift or temporary contrivance, as jury mast, jury rudder, jury bowsprit. which may be fitted when either has been lest or carried away.


Kamsin - A south-westerly wind which is said to blow on the Nile for fifty days during March and April.

Kedge - The smallest anchor a yacht carries, used for anchoring temporarily by a hawser or warp. To kedge is to anchor by the kedge, or to carry the kedge anchor out in a boat and warp ahead by it.

Keel -the timber at the very bottom of the hull to which frames are attatched.

Keelson or Kelson - A structural member or inside keel fitted over the throats of the floors above and parallel to the keel.


Keep her Full - When close hauled, an admonition not to keep too close to the wind.

Keep her Off - An order to sail more off the wind; to put the helm up. To keep off is to keep away from the wind.

Keep your Luff - An admonition to keep close to the wind. In match sailing, an order given when a vessel is being overtaken by one coming up from astern not to give way and allow the vessel to pass to windward. It is an old maxim in close-hauled sailing, "keep your luff and never look astern" meaning that if you sail as close to the wind as possible the overtaking vessel must take her passage to leeward or risk a collision by trying to force a passage to windward.

Kentledge - Rough pig iron used as ballast.

Ketch - A two-masted vessel, something like a yawl, but with the mizen stepped ahead of the stern post, and not abaft it as a yawl has it.

Kevel or Cavel - Large pieces of timber used for belaying ropes to, such as the horizontal piece which is bolted to the stanchions aft to belay the main sheet to.

Key Model - A model made by horizontal layers or vertical blocks, showing either the water lines or vertical sections of a vessel.

Keg - A small cask, or breaker.

Keel - The fore-and-aft timber in a vessel to which the frames and garboard strake are fastened.

Kick-Up - Describes a rudder or centerboard that rotates back and up when an obstacle is encountered. Useful when a boat is to be beached.

Kit - A sailor's belongings in the way of clothes. which he carries in his bag or keeps in his locker.

Kittiwak Knees.-- Pieces of timber or iron shaped thus - L - used to strengthen particular parts of a ship. A hanging knee is the one fitted under the beams; a lodging knee is a knee fitted horizontally to the beams and shelf, or to the mast partners or deck beams. Floor knees are V-shaped, like breast-hooks.

Knight Heads - Strong pieces of timber fitted inside and close to the stem to bear the strain of the bowsprit. Called also "bollard timbers." The name is said to be derived from the windlass bitts, the heads of which formerly were carved to represent the heads of knights.

Knockabout - A type of schooner without a bowsprit.

Knot - A measure of speed equal to one nautical mile per hour. A division of the old log line bearing the same relation to a nautical mile as the period of the sand glass did to an hour. The nautical mile is 6080ft, a statute mile is 5280ft. A sea mile = 1.1515 statute mile.

Knot - A fastening made by interweaving rope to form a stopper, to enclose or bind an object, to form a loop or a noose, to tie a small rope to an object, or to tie the ends of two small ropes together.



Labour - A ship is said to labour when she pitches and rolls heavily, causing her frame to work.

Lacing - To pass a rope through the eyelets of a sail and round a spar.

Laid - The make of a rope, as cable laid, hawser laid, single laid, laid with the sun.

Land - To go from a vessel to the shore; also to place anything. The outer edge of the plank of a clincher-built boat. The term "land" is used to mean the coast.

Land Fall - The point or part of a coast a vessel first sights after being at sea. To make a good landfall is to sight the laud at the point calculated, "under the bowsprit end," as it is termed.

Land Lubber - A person living on land and unacquainted with the duties of a seaman; also an awkward loutish country sort of person who on board ship cannot get into the ways of a seaman.

Landsman - Men who have just joined a ship to train as seamen.

Lane - A lane of wind is a current of air that travels in a narrow space and does not spread. Also ocean tracks for steamships. On board ship the order to "Make a lane there," when a lot of men are standing together in passages or gangways, is an order for them to stand on one side so that others can pass.

Lanyards or Laniards - Hopes rove through dead eyes, by which shrouds and stays are setup.

Lapper - A foresail which extends back of and overlapping the mast, such as a 110% genoa jib.

Larboard - The left side. In consequence of frequent blunders occurring through "larboard" being misunderstood for "starboard" or vice versa', "port," as a distinctive sound, was introduced instead of larboard.

Larbolins - The men composing the port watch. (See "Starbolins.")

Large - With the wind abeam or abaft the beam. "She is sailing along large" means that the ship has the wind abeam or between the beam and the quarter.

Lash - To lace, to bind together with a rope.

Lashing - A lacing or rope to bind two spars together, or sails to a spar.

Lateen Sail - A large triangular sail, with the luff bent to a yard. It has no gaff.

Lateral Resistance - The resistance a vessel offers to being pressed broadside on through the water. This resistance is assumed to be governed by the area of the plane bounded by the waterline, stem, keel, and rudder.

Latitude - The distance north or south of the equator measured and expressed in degrees.

Launch - The largest boat carried by a ship. To launch is to move an object, as "launch a spar forward," to launch a ship.

Lay - Used by sailors instead of the neuter verb "to lie" as "lay to" for lie to, "lay her course" for lie her course, "lay up" for lie up, &c. or "she lays S.W." for lies S.W. This use of the active verb is sometimes justified by an appeal to the well-known naval song

'Twas in Trafalgar's Bay

We saw the Frenchmen lay.

But, whether right or wrong, a sailor will never be brought to say, "there she lies" for "there she lays", or "she's going to lie up" for "she's going to lay up."

Lay along the Land - When a vessel can just keep along a weather shore close-hauled, or when she lays along a lee shore.

Lay her Course - A vessel is said to lay her course when sailing close-hauled, if her head points nothing to leeward of it.

Laying Up - Dismantling a yacht after the season's racing or cruising is over.

Lay in Oars - An order given to a boat's crew to toss their oars and lay them in board; generally curtly spoken" Oars."

Lay on your oars" - is an order for the men to cease rowing, but not to toss their oars up; to rest on their oars.

Lay of a Rope - The way the strands of a rope are laid; right or left laid ; close laid.

Lay Off - To transfer the design of a vessel to the mould loft full size. This is never written or spoken "lie off."

Lay Out - To move out, as to lay out on a yardarm, also to make a good forward and backward reach in rowing.

Lazarette - A storage space in a boat's stern area.

Lazy Guy - The guy used to prevent the main boom falling aboard when a vessel is rolling, with the wind astern.

Lazy Jack - Light lines from the topping lift to the boom, forming a cradle into which the mainsail may be lowered.

Lazy Tack - A running bight put on the tack cringle of a topsail, and round a stay to keep the sail from blowing away whilst it is hoisted,

Leach - The after up and down edge of a sail.

Lead (pronounced with a long e) - Refers to the direction in which a line goes. A boom vang, for example, may "lead to the cockpit."

Lead (pronounced with a short e) - A long weight or "sinker," of 7lb., 14lb., or 28lb.

The line is "marked" thus:


2 '' a piece of leather in two strips.

3 ,, leather three strips.

5 ,, white calico.

7 ,, red bunting.

10 ,, leather with a hole in it.

13 ,, blue serge.

15 ,, white calico.

17 ,, red bunting.

20 ,, two knots.

There are usually 5 fathoms beyond this unmarked. In heaving the lead, if the vessel has headway, the lead must be cast ahead, so that when it touches the bottom the vessel is directly over it.

If the first white mark is just awash when the lead is on the bottom, the leadsman sings out, "By the mark five." If it is less than five, say 4-3/4 he sings out "Quarter less five," and not 4-3/4. If 1/4 or 1/2 more than five, he sings out "and a quarter five,".

There are no marks for 1, 4, 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, and 19 fathoms, and these numbers are called "deeps"; in sounding, the leadsman has to estimate the depth, as, for instance, between 5 and 7 marks, and will sing out, "By the deep 6."

The deep-sea lead, pronounced "dipsey led," weighs from 28lb. to 35lb., and has a much longer line. Up to 20 fathoms it is marked the same as the hand lead-at 30 fathoms 3 knots, at 40 fathoms 4 knots, and so on; the intermediate "fives" being marked by a piece of leather or a small strand with a knot in it; 100 fathoms is marked by a piece of bunting, and then commence the knots: 1 knot = 10 fathoms, and so on. In sounding with the deep-sea lead the vessel is usually hove to.

Lead Ballast - Bricks of lead cast from moulds to fit inside the frames of a vessel without resting on the plank.

Lead-water-line - The line of flotation when a vessel is properly laden or ballasted.

Lead-water Section - The horizontal plane at the line of flotation.

Lee - The side sheltered from the wind. The opposite side to that from which the wind blows.

Lee Board - A very old-fashioned contrivance to cheek leeway. The board is usually trapeziform, and hung from the gunwale on either side. When sailing to windward it is dropped on the lee side to prevent lee way, hence the term "lee board."

Lee, By the - In running nearly before the wind, when a vessel runs off her helm so much as to bring the wind on the opposite quarter to which the boom is; a very dangerous proceeding, as if there be no boom guy a sudden gybe, or a gybe "all standing," may be the result. For safety, the helm should be put down the instant a vessel begins to run off. In match sailing, in running for a mark, yachts are often brought by the lee through a shift of wind, and frequently they are kept so, if a spinnaker or squaresail be set, and if near the mark, to save a gybe, every precaution being of course taken to prevent the main boom coming over, by hauling on the guy or pressing against the boom; this risk, however, should only be hazarded in very light winds.

Lee-going Tide - The tide that is running to leeward in the direction of the wind. The opposite to weather-going tide, which see.

Lee Helm - The helm put to leeward to luff, or to keep a vessel to or by the wind. Also synonymous with slack helm. If the centre of effort of the sails is much forward of the centre of lateral resistance, the vessel will have a tendency to fall off, and will require the helm to be put to leeward to keep her close to wind. The tendency can be checked by reducing the head sail, or by hardening in the sheets of the after sail and easing the sheets of the head sail. A vessel that requires lee helm will be an awkward one, and in a heavy sea a dangerous one to work to windward. The contrary to "weather helm," which see.

Lee Scuppers - Inside the lee bulwarks by the scupper holes. To be always in the lee scuppers is to be always in disgrace.

Leech - The aft edge of a triangular sail.

Leech Line - A line running through the leech of the sail, used to tighten it.

Leeward - The direction away from the wind. Opposite of Windward.

Leeway - The sideways movement of the boat caused by either wind or current.

Lee Boards - Pivoting boards on either side of a boat which serve the same function as a centerboard. The board to leeward is dropped, the board to windward is kept up.

Lend a Hand Here - An order to a person to assist.

Let Fall - In rowing an order for a boat's crew to drop oars (after they have been on end) into the rowlocks, tholes, or crutches.

Let Go and Haul - In tacking a square rigged vessel the order given to let go the lee braces and haul in on the others.

Let Her Feel the Weight of It - An order to keep a vessel more off the wind, and not allow her sails to shake.

Life Buoy -Usually a painted canvas ring stuffed with solid cork.

Light Eye - A bright white look in the sky above the horizon, sometimes betokening that a breeze may be expected from such a quarter.

Lights - The lights which all vessels must exhibit between sundown and sunrise.

Limber Boards - Plank covering the floors of a vessel near the keelson. In yachts built with iron knee floors it is a common practice to fill up all cavities along the keel or hogging piece, fore deadwood and apron, and deadwood aft, with cement, after coating the wood with.

Limber Clearer - A small chain which is kept rove through the limber holes in the floors at the side of the keelson, to allow the bilge water to flow freely to the pumps; occasionally the chain is worked backwards and forwards to clear the holes. This contrivance is seldom met with in yachts.

Line or Lines - Gerneral name for rope or cordage used for various purposes aboard a boat.

Liner - An old line of battle ship. Now used to describe a large passenger ship.

Lines -A general term applied to the drawing or design of a vessel as depicted by fore-and-aft lines and cross sections. A vessel is said to have "fine lines" when she is very sharp fore-and-aft.

List - A vessel is said to list when from some cause such as shifting of ballast or cargo or weights she heels over.

Listing - A narrow strip of plank, usually 4in. in width, cut out of the plank of a ship throughout her whole length, in order that the condition of her frames or timbers may be examined.

Lizard - A piece of rope with a thimble eye spliced in one end, used in setting square sails; sometimes the lizard is of two or more parts with a thimble in each, the whole being spliced into one tail.

Lloyd's - an association of marine underwriters in the City of London. See Addendum

Lob Sided - Larger or heavier on one side than on the other.

Locker - A small cabin, or cupboard, or cavity to stow articles in.

Log - A record of courses or operation. Also, a device to measure speed.

Log Board or Log Slate - The slate on which the hourly occurrences in navigating a ship-her speed, canvas, courses, the strength of wind, direction of wind, and general condition of weather-are set down.

Log Line and Ship - An ancient contrivance for testing the speed of a ship. The line is attached to a board (termed the ship), and is marked for knots every 47ft. 3in. but an allowance is made for the following wake). According as the number of knots which run out in 28sec by the sand glass, so is the speed of the vessel. There is a drift of some feet between the log ship and the first knot, the glass being turned as the first knot takes the water. The number of knots run out in the 28sec marks The the speed of the vessel.

Long Leg and a Short One - In beating to windward, when a vessel can sail nearer her course she sails the intended course on one tack than another. Thus, say her course is E and the wind S.E. by E. she would lie E. by N. one tack, which would he the long leg and S. by E. on the other, which would be the short leg.

Long Shore - A contraction of along shore.

Long Tackle Blocks - A double block with one sheave above the other, as a fiddle block, which see. Used for the runner tackle.

Longitude - The distance in degrees east or west of the prime meridian measured from the North-South line through Greenwich Observatory in England.

Look - The direction a vessel points when sailing by the wind. As, she "looks high," "looks up well," "looks a high course."

Lookout, The - The sailor stationed on the bow or aloft to watch the approach of other ships or to seek the land.

Loose - Adrift; to unloose, to unfurl; to loose of a sail ties or gaskets.

Loose-Footed - Describes a mainsail attached to the boom at the tack and clew, but not along the length of it's foot.

Lose her Way - Said of a vessel when she loses motion or gradually comes to a stop.

Lower - To cause a thing to descend-as to "lower the topsail". An order given to ease up halyards, as "Lower," "Lower away!"

Lower Masts - The masts that are next to the deck.

Lubber's Hole - The opening in the top of a square rigged vessel, by which seamen get into the top instead of by the futtock shrouds.

Lubber Line or Lubber's Point - A mark or permanent line on a compass indicating the direction forward parallel to the keel when properly installed

Lucky Puff.-- A puff that "frees" a vessel in close hauled sailing.

Luff - The forward edge of a triangular sail. In a mainsail the luff is that portion that is closest to the mast. To come nearer the wind. To "spring your luff" is to luff all the ship is capable of, without making her sails shake.

Luff of a Sail.-- The weather edge of a sail.

Luffing or Luff and Touch Her- when the vessel is brought too far into the wind the trailing edge or Leech of the sail begins to shiver or shake.

Luff Tackle - A tackle composed of a single and double block, the standing part of the rope being fast to the single block.

Luff upon Luff - One luff tackle hitched to the fall of another so as to make a double purchase.

Lugger - A vessel rigged with lug sails like the fishing boats of Western Europe

Lug-Sail Boat - A boat with a lug sail.

Lug-Sheet -Term used in a racing schooner for the sheet attached to the clew of the foresail. In a modern racing schooner the foresail sheet is on the boom of the foresail in the usual way and the foresail sheet runs on a horse on deck forward of the mainmast, but the clew and leech of the foresail extend beyond the fore boom end, abaft the mainmast, and an extra sheet called the " log. sheet" is attached to the clew of the sail and is bowsed down or hauled well aft, being run through a fair lead on deck on the lee quarter. It is sheeted home by means of a double tackle.

Lurch - When a vessel is left unsupported at the bow, stern, or amidships, so that she makes a sudden dive forward, or by the stern, or a heavy weather or lee roll.

Lutings - Stoppings of white lead, putty, tar, varnish, for seams and joins in tanks; sometimes used with a strip of canvas as a kind of caulking.

Lying To - The condition of a ship when hove to. (See "Trying" and "Lay.")

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