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bald headed

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A sailing term used to indicate a square-rigged ship without her royals set, or permanently rigged without them. It is also used for gaff-rigged vessels without their topmasts.

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Bermudan rig

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A sail plan, in which, unlike the gaff rig, a triangular-shaped mainsail is attached to a track on a single pole mast. The Bermudan rig, or leg o' mutton rig as it was initially sometimes...

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double-clewed jib

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A headsail which was also known as a quadrilateral jib. It was introduced aboard the J-class Endeavour by her owner Mr (later Sir) Thomas Sopwith prior to the 1934 challenge for the...

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fancy line

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 A line rove through a block at the jaws of a gaff and used as a downhaul when lowering the sail. It was only necessary in larger vessels setting a sail with a gaff rig.

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flag etiquette

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

Also called yacht routine in the USA, is concerned with what flags, burgees, and ensigns should be hoisted while afloat, and where they should be flown, or worn, in order to obey national...

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fore-and-aft rig

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 The arrangement of sails in a sailing vessel so that the luffs of the sails are attached to the masts or to stays, as in the Bermudan and gaff rigs; or, as with the lateen...

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foreguy

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A rope leading forward from the end of a mainsail boom to the bitts to prevent the boom from swinging inboard when the ship was reaching or running before a following wind which was patchy...

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halyard

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History — Warfare and Defence.

The ropes, wires, or tackles used to hoist or lower sails, either to their yards in square-rigged ships—with the exception of the fore, main, and mizzen course—or on their gaffs, or by...

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hoop

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 In old-fashioned gaff-rigged sailing craft the luff of the mainsail was secured to the mast by wooden hoops which slid up and down the mast as the sail was hoisted and...

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horns

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 The points of the jaws of a boom or gaff in a gaff-rigged sailing vessel where they meet the mast.

2 The name of the outer ends of a mast's crosstrees.

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jackyard topsail

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A triangular topsail set above the mainsail in a gaff-rigged sailing vessel. It sets a larger area of sail than a jib-headed topsail as both the luff and the foot of the topsail are laced...

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jib-headed topsail

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

A triangular topsail set above the mainsail in a gaff-rigged vessel. The peak of the topsail is hoisted to the masthead and the foot is stretched along the top of the gaff, so that the sail...

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launch

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 A type of flat-bottomed vessel with little freeboard which was used as a gunboat by some of the countries bordering the Mediterranean during the 18th and 19th centuries.

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lug

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 The name, rarely used, of the yard on which a lugsail is set but more often employed to describe the sail of any small boat.

2 A projection on a mast or...

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mainsail

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

The principal sail of a sailing vessel. On a square-rigged vessel this is the lowermost (and largest) sail carried on the mainmast, and is usually termed the main course. The earliest known...

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marconi rig

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

Sometimes confused with the Bermudan rig, particularly in the USA where for a long time it was a synonymous term. It was introduced by the yacht designer Charles E. Nicholson onto the...

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peak

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 The upper, after corner of the four-sided gaff-rigged sail. The halyards used to hoist the outer end of a gaff sail are known as peak halyards. For illus. see gaff rig.

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points of sailing

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

The headings of a sailing vessel in relation to the wind. When a vessel is sailing as near to the wind as it can, it is said to be close hauled, i.e. with its sails sheeted (hardened) well...

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reef

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 The means of shortening a sail to the amount appropriate to the strength of the wind, and the same word is also used as a verb to describe this action. There are various ways...

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rig

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

1 See bermudan rig; de horsey rig; fore-and-aft rig; gaff rig; junk rig; lateen rig; ljungstrom rig; lugsail rig; marconi rig; rotating rig; ship rigged; square rig; una rig;...

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