1 The distance a vessel makes to leeward, by the action of either the tide or the wind.
2 The term used to indicate the rate in knots of ocean currents, as for example for the ‘west wind drift’ which circles the globe in southern latitudes under the influence of the Roaring Forties.
3 The distance a shell fired from a rifled barrel deviates from its aimed trajectory because of the rotation imparted to it by the rifling, a matter that used to be of considerable importance in the days when big naval guns were fired long distances at sea.
4 The accumulation of pieces of wood, trunks of trees, etc., or fragments of small ice broken away from the edges of icefields, collected together by the action of wind or current and lying on the surface in a mass.
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