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1 The name given by seamen to a short turn or twist in a rope or hawser (see also frenchman).

2 That part of a rope bound by a seizing around a thimble or round the tucks of an eye splice. Nip in the hawse, a twist in a ship's cable when lying to an anchor, which can usually be cured by veering more cable to an order to ‘freshen the nip’, a phrase that can also mean to ease marginally or tighten a sheet or halyard so that any point of chafe is moved.

3 As a verb, it is applied to a vessel when it is caught between two converging floes of ice in Arctic or Antarctic waters.

Subjects: Maritime History.

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