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Old 05-25-2023, 05:51 AM
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Dane Dane is offline
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Laurence Finston, I thank you for your help and clear explanations. I'm very shamed because I hadn't taken a look in Glossary. It is so simple...*
FRD, thank you for your interest in this thread.
My personal site.
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Old 05-25-2023, 08:18 AM
Peter Ansoff Peter Ansoff is offline
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Originally Posted by Laurence Finston View Post
It's certainly "side" since "port side" and "starboard side" are the normal terms for the sides of a boat or ship. And "fore" and "aft" for the front and back, as you probably know, and "aloft" and "below" for up in the rigging and below deck, respectively. Don't know how a normal word like "below" snuck in there.
I have actually heard the term "alow" (meaning on or below deck) in nautical use: "I can't find my marlinspike -- I've searched for it alow and aloft." The general convention seems to be that the prefix "a" denotes a direction relative to the ship: ahead, astern, alee, aweather, abeam, etc. There also seem to be some finer distinctions: "aft" means toward the stern, "abaft" means toward the stern in relation to something else (the mizzen mast is abaft the main mast), and "astern" means behind the stern outside of the ship.
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Old 05-25-2023, 08:48 AM
Laurence Finston Laurence Finston is offline
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Originally Posted by Peter Ansoff View Post
[...] and "astern" means behind the stern outside of the ship.
Thank you for the information. Other members of my family sail or sailed but I never learned how and try to stay on dry land as much as possible.

When I read what you wrote about the word "astern", the beginning of the song "High Barbary" suddenly popped into my mind: "Look ahead, look astern, look the weather on the lee" (or something like that).

That song may have been among a set of 78s my father had, sung by those renowned seafarers Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger.
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