1 The word used to denote the direction in which a current or tide flows, e.g. ‘the tide is setting to the southward’. It is also the distance and direction in which a vessel is moved by the tide in relation to its desired course and distance run.
2 It is a word also applied to sails in relation to their angle with the wind as, for example, in the ‘set of a jib’.
3 As a verb, it has many maritime meanings. For example, a current or tide sets in the direction in which it flows; a ship sets a course when it is steadied down on it; a sail is set when it is hoisted and sheeted home to the wind; a ship sets sail, regardless of whether it uses sails or not; and an anchor watch is set.