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  • Maritime History
  • Warfare and Defence


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Quick Reference

The abbreviated title for the rating of able seaman, indicating someone able to perform all the duties of a seaman on board ship. In the days of sail it was someone who could hand, reef, and steer, but today he or she must have many more maritime skills than that. The initials have been thought to refer to an ‘able-bodied’ seaman, but this is not so: they are merely the first two letters of ‘able’.

Subjects: Maritime History — Warfare and Defence.

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