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The Dictionary of English Nautical Language Database: Search Results

  Your search returned 297 matches.
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Term: battleship (n)
Definition: The largest and most heavily armed of the classes of warships. Generally considered outdated in modern naval warfare, though several are in commission and are employed, according to some experts, for political rather than military reasons.

Term: battlewagon (n)
Definition: Battleship. (Offhand or slang term).

Term: bay (n)
Definition: 1) A small body of inland water adjacent to the ocean A body of water broader than the inlet which fills it, affording protected anchorage, recreational boating, and access to dockage. 2) An larger open area belowdecks on a ship, as in cargo bay, sick bay.

Term: bayou (pron: bye-you) (n)
Definition: The slow moving swampy creeks and small river tributaries typical of southern Louisiana. The word bayou is Acadian (Louisiana French) derived from the Choctaw Indian term for the wetlands.

Term: beach (n)
Definition: 1) The land at the water’s edge usually covered by shell debris, sand or small pebbles; as in: “She likes to collect shells on the beach.” 2) Ashore, meaning anywhere there is dry land; as in: “The captain’s next assignment was on the beach.”

Term: beach (v)
Definition: To run a ship onto the shore, or ground the ship by running into shore. When done gently this is perfectly acceptable in a small boat, but in a larger boat or ship this is a serious error in navigation. In an extreme emergency, a ship’s captain may elect to beach his vessel to keep it from sinking in deep water or for easier rescue of his passengers and crew.

Term: beach boat (n)
Definition: A style of small boat that could be launched from shore by a few strong men. Often double enders, such boats are common where the tidal range is great.
See Also: surf boat, lifeboat

Term: beacon (n)
Definition: A signal light, or electronic signal used for navigation or warning. This is a descriptive term, and not the word used by seamen in normal shipboard language.
See Also: radio beacon, lighthouse, light

Term: beak (n)
Definition: The small platform mounted at the stem by the bowsprit where the heads were located.
See Also: head

Term: beam (n)
Definition: The width of a ship at her widest part; as in: “She had a 14 foot beam.”

Term: beam ends (n)
Definition: Literally the ends of the beams or cross members in the deck framing, the term is used exclusively to describe the rolling effect of very rough seas on the ship; as in: “She was standing on her beam ends, it was so rough.”

Term: beam reach (n)
Definition: Sailing with the wind on the beam.

Term: beam seas (n)
Definition: Ocean waves that approach the vessel abeam, a very dangerous situation in heavy weather

Term: beam trawler (n)
Definition: A commercial fishing vessel carrying trawl nets boomed out on both sides from a central mast.
See Also: trawler

Term: beamy (adj)
Definition: Describing a vessel that has a proportionally wide measurement from side to side.

Term: bean cod (n)
Definition: A small fishing vessel of Portugal.

Term: bear (v)
Definition: 1) To lie at an angle to the observer’s course, as in “The light bears six points off the port bow.” 2) To lie in a certain compass direction, as in “The buoy bears 320 degrees magnetic.”
See Also: lie

Term: bear (n)
Definition: A large porous stone used for scrubbing the decks.
See Also: holystone, bible

Term: bear away (v)
Definition: To change direction from close hauled to a reach or run
See Also: bear off

Term: bear down (v)
Definition: To head toward and close on another ship.

Term: bear off (v)
Definition: 1) To turn the vessel away from the direction of the wind. 2) To change direction to avoid a collision
See Also: ease

Term: bear up (v)
Definition: To change direction toward the wind.

Term: bearding line (n)
Definition: A line in the profile view of design drawings showing the location of the top edge of the keel rabbet.

Term: bearing, bearings (n)
Definition: 1) The compass direction from a ship to visible marks, such as a lighthouse, buoy, church steeple or another ship. In navigation, two or more bearings on stationary objects at wide angles to each other provide a fix. The bearing angle may be described as true or magnetic. 2) A closely machined metal ring used in engines to support turning shafts.
See Also: relative bearing, cutlass bearing

Term: beat (v)
Definition: To drive a sailing ship to weather by sailing close hauled on alternating tacks. To tack to weather; as in: “With this southeast wind, we will have to beat the whole way.”
See Also: tack

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