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The right-hand side of a vessel when looking forward. It is generally accepted to be a corruption of steer-board, the board or oar which projected into the sea from the starboard quarter of ancient ships and by which they were steered before the invention of the hanging rudder. See also larboard; port; steering oar.

In the days of sail the starboard side of a ship used to be the side usually reserved for the captain. He used the starboard ladder when going ashore or returning to the ship, everyone else would use the port ladder; the starboard side of the poop deck or quarterdeck was usually reserved for him when he came on deck for exercise; and his cabin was normally on the starboard side of the ship.

Subjects: Maritime History — Warfare and Defence.

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