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Thread: Nautical terms!

  1. #1
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    Default Nautical terms!

    From Bluejacket Shipcrafter's occasional newsletter for modellers. Subscribe here: http://campaign.r20.constantcontact....5-bc3ed762c57e

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Nautical terms and origins

    Aloft - Up a mast. This word is one of surprisingly few that seems to have originated in English.

    Charley Noble - Is the nickname for the galley smokepipe. Various guesses have been made on this, everyone agreeing that somebody in the early XIX century took great pride in keeping the brass or copper (or possibly both) galley-stack brightly shined. You have some choices here: he was "identified" variously as a cook, an officer or mate, or a captain, British or American, of a naval or merchant vessel.

    Lubber - An awkward or not too bright sailor or workman. The origin is Anglo-Saxon, lobbe, a slow, clumsy person.

    Norman - (1) A pin to lock a capstan, to belay it and the cable temporarily. (2) a crossbar on bitts. (3) A pin or stud to lock a rudder in a given position. It may be a corruption of normal, in the sense of a right angle, which came from the Latin normalis, made square.


    Information is from the book "Origins of Sea Terms" by John G. Rogers
    copyright 1985 Mystic Seaport Museum, Inc. and available from BlueJacket.
    If I had a dollar for every girl who found me unattractive, eventually they would find me attractive.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    BOSOM - The inside of an angle bar. - "Nomenclature of Naval Vessels", Navy Department, Washington, D.C.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by rbgarr View Post
    Charley Noble - Is the nickname for the galley smokepipe. Various guesses have been made on this, everyone agreeing that somebody in the early XIX century took great pride in keeping the brass or copper (or possibly both) galley-stack brightly shined. You have some choices here: he was "identified" variously as a cook, an officer or mate, or a captain, British or American, of a naval or merchant vessel.
    Anyone know who Matthew Walker was?
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    I have this reference in a book about rigging & knots: "...early references from the 19th century suggest he may have been a ship's rigger in the Royal Navy."
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbgarr View Post
    Lubber - An awkward or not too bright sailor or workman. The origin is Anglo-Saxon, lobbe, a slow, clumsy person.
    Hence the Lubber hole.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Grunt-futtock anyone?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    What zit say about forestry length?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Anyone know who Matthew Walker was?
    The story I heard was that a seaman was cited for a capital crime and had to appear before a judge in court. The judge was also a sailor and told Mathew Walker, if he could present a knot that he could not tie, he would set him free.

    Mathew Walker called for a fifty fathoms of rope to be delivered to his cell and proceeded to unlay half of it and tie the famous knot in the middle. He then relaid the rope and returned to court the next day. The judge was true to his word and set Mathew Walker free. Incidentally rope becomes line when it is taken out and cut from the storage tub. It was usually stored under the floor of the Chandlery in the pit. However there are still a few ropes on a ship. How man can you name?

    Jay

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    However there are still a few ropes on a ship. How man can you name?
    The bell rope. A bolt rope.

    What else?

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by wizbang 13 View Post
    What zit say about forestry length?

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    when do we get to cuntsplices and buttocks and futtocks?
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    And what about "three daughters", "", "fractulate", "flaka", "spock", "dork", "tea bagging", "Superman moments", "everoles", "cheese roll", the "Bennet's bath" and the "Golden Dazy Blooper Gybe"?
    Last edited by Chris249; 05-04-2018 at 04:38 PM.

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    The bell rope. A bolt rope.

    What else?

    Kevin
    Man rope.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    I've read the story that Jay posted as well.
    basil

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Man rope.
    Foot rope
    Elect a clown expect a circus

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    The bell rope. A bolt rope.

    What else?

    Kevin
    Foot ropes if a square rigged ship.

    What the cruel bosun did to motivate the landsmen: he "started them with a rope end," or "starter."
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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greer View Post
    However there are still a few ropes on a ship. How man can you name?

    Jay
    I believe that a dinghy's painter is also a rope.
    Schooner captains love to get blown offshore!

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Head rope, stern rope, foot rope, bell rope, man rope, tow rope, bolt rope, back rope. They're the only ones I can always remember. I think there are a few more but they always slip my mind.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    I once counted on a brig I worked on, there were 48 ropes, but that's counting each sail as having one, not four bolt ropes.
    Nicholas

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Top rope.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    I was told once that words like: deck, mast, boom, yacht, are Dutch origin. Perhaps we can thank William of Orange, who could not speak English when arrived to be crowned, or young Charles, later Charles II, who spent time in Holland and loved sailing.

  22. #22
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    Here is what I got from Herreshoff. I thought I knew most of them but this one opened my eyes. It can be found in the book, An L Francis Herreshoff Reader. Much of these ropes are from the days of square rig but I just though it might be of interest.
    Jay

    Awning Rope, A rope around an area to which an awning is laced.
    Back-Rope The rope pendant or small chain for staying the dolphin striker.
    Bell Rope A short rope attached to the tongue of a ship's bell.
    Boat Rope A separate rope veered to the boat to be towed at the ship's stern.
    Bolt Rope. A hand-laid rope used in several places where it is not required to flex, such as the head rope, foot rope, leach rope and luff rope
    of a sail.
    Breast Rope. A rope fastened along the lanyards of the shrouds to secure the leadsman when in the chains, heaving the lead.
    Breech Rope A rope to restrain the recoil of a gun when discharged.
    Bucket Rope A rope attached to the handle of a bucket for drawing water to scrub the deck, put out fires, etc.
    Bull Rope A hawser rove through a block on the bowsprit and attached to a bouy to keep it clear of the ship.
    Buoy Rope. A rope that fastens the buoy to the anchor.
    Cat Rope. A line for hauling the cat-hook about.
    Check Rope A rope made fast to anything stationary for the purpose of bringing a moving vessel to a stand.
    Clew Rope. In large sails, the eye or loop at the clew is made of a rope larger than the bolt rope into which it is spliced.
    Davit Rope Lashing that secures the davit to the shrouds when not in use.
    Drag Ropes. Two ropes that are trailed from the after quarters of a sailing vessel so that if a man fell overboard he could grab one of these ropes
    as the vessel passed him. They generally had Turk's-head knots on them, spaced about 2 1/2 feet apart, to assist one in climbing
    aboard.

    Entering Ropes Ropes that hung from the upper part of the stanchions alonsde the ladder at the gangways.

    Foot Rope. A rope suspended under a yard or boom for men to stand on. Also that part of the bolt rope to which the bottom of the sail is
    attached.
    Grab Rope A line secured above a boat a boat boom or gangplank for steadying oneself.
    Guest Rope A rope fastened to an eye-bolt in the ships's side, and from the outer end to the outer end of the, projecting from the ship's side,
    by guys, to keep boats clear of the sides.
    Hawse Rope. A rope used to thane the strain off the anchor warp when clearing hawse.
    Head Rope. A rope to haul out jib-booms, and the bowsprits of cutters, etc. Also, that part of a bolt rope at the top of a sail.
    Heel Rope. A rope for securing the inner end of a studding sail boom to a yard.
    Jaw Rope. A rope over a gaff jaw to keep it from leaving the mast.
    Limber Rope. A rope rove fore and aft through the limbers to clear them when necessary.
    Luff Rope. That part of a bolt rope on a fore and aft sail that is nearest the mast.
    Parrel Rope. A rope used to confine a yard to a mast at its center
    Passing Rope. A rope led around the ship, through eyes in the quarter, waist, gangway, and forecastle stanchions forward to the knights head.
    Port Ropes. Ropes for hauling up and suspending the gun port lids.
    Ridge Ropes. Ropes sewed along the center of an awning to give it the pitch needed to shed rain.
    Ring Ropes. Ropes made fast to ring-bolts in the deck, by cross turns around the anchor cable to secure it during stormy weather. Also used
    to reeve off the anchor cable through the hawse hole.
    Slip Rope A rope whose bight is passed throught the ring of a mooring buoy with both ends on shipboard. By letting go one end and hauling.
    on the other, the ship is freed.
    Span Rope. A rope made fast at both ends for hooking a block to the bight.
    Spring Rope. A rope led from a ships quarter to her anchor cable, to bring her broadside guns to bear upon a given object.
    Swab Rope. A rope tied to the handle of a swab for dipping it overboard.
    Tail Rope A rope, attached to the clew cringle, that is made taut then the sheets are transferred
    Tiller Ropes. Ropes leading friom the tiller-head around the barrel of the wheel. Also used to control the tiller of a small craft.
    Top Rope. A rope rove though the heel of a topmast to hoist it by its tackle to the masthead.
    Trip Rope Rope fastened to the tripping hook of the anchor tackle to release the anchor when the order, "Let Fall" is given.
    Yard Rope A temorary rope used for hoisting a yard for crossing or sending down.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Dang!!!

    That's enough ropes to hang yourself.
    Schooner captains love to get blown offshore!

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    There can also be man ropes, which hang down from a davit to allow the crew in the sternsheets and bow to have something to hold as a boat is hoisted.
    Nicholas

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pelirrojo View Post
    There can also be man ropes, which hang down from a davit to allow the crew in the sternsheets and bow to have something to hold as a boat is hoisted.
    Nicholas
    And if they're thoughtful types, they'll lift their weight so as to ease the work of the men on the falls.
    -Dave

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    As so often happens I, who thought I was pretty seadoggy for knowing seven ropes, am awed by Jay's encyclopedic knowledge.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    gronicle ropes
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    A well found wooden boat has a dedicated locker or gear bag for the storage of "Gronicle Ropes!

    And, my thanks to Nicholas for adding the "Man Ropes" to the plethora of roping about in boats!
    Jay aka Bird
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 05-06-2018 at 01:00 PM.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Then of course, also not mentioned in the L Francis Herreshoff Reader, is the rope that's burning when there's a "Fire in the rope locker!"
    Schooner captains love to get blown offshore!

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Cable Tier?
    Jay

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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greer View Post
    Cable Tier?
    I had to Google that one!
    Schooner captains love to get blown offshore!

  32. #32
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    gronicle ropes
    Ya beat me to it...

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    OK, folks, it is time... (if Paul can get away with cuntsplice, which has a documented historical use):

    niggerhead - a small auxiliary drum on a winch. - Nomenclature of Naval Vessels, Navy Department, Washington D.C.

    also,

    A type of marine rope winch used for nautical applications invented by the Spanish and Portuguese in the 1300s. When full of rope it resembled a type of tree known as negro cabeca or darkhead or blackhead or literally niggerhead in English. Named 300 years before the word nigger was ever used to describe someone of African descent in any form of literature. - Urban Dictionary
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    X-Dimension


    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Nautical terms!

    Nipper, used with the messenger.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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