to feather

Quick Reference

1 To alter the angle of the blades of a propeller so that they lie with the leading edge more or less in the line of advance of the vessel, normally a sailing vessel, to which they are fitted. The object of feathering a propeller is to reduce the drag when the vessel is under sail alone.

2 To turn the blade of an oar from the vertical to the horizontal while it is being taken back for the next rowing stroke, performed by dropping the wrists at the end of the stroke.

3 To sail very close to the wind to prevent excess load on the sails.

Subjects: Maritime History.

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