to gird

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To haul in or to bind something together with the object of securing more space. It is an expression used particularly in regard to rigging and more especially to the rigging of a square-rigged ship, where extra space was needed to brace the lower yards round when sailing close hauled. The standing rigging of a mast when it reached the hounds often formed a limit to the degree a lower yard could be braced round; if this rigging could be girded in to the mast, extra space for the yard was made and it could be braced sharper. See also catharpings.

Subjects: Maritime History.

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