BERTH (1) Bunk. (2) Duty assignment.
(3) Mooring space assigned to a ship.
BIGHT The middle part of a line, or a loop
in a line.
BILGE (1) Bottom of the hull near the keel.
(2) To fail an examination. (3) Bilge water is foul
water, so to apply that term to something implies
it is worthless.
BILGE KEEL A keel attached to the outside
of a ships hull, near the turn of the bilge, to
BILLET Place or duty to which one is
BINNACLE Stand containing a magnetic
BINNACLE LIST List of persons excused
from duty because of illness.
BITT Cylindrical upright fixture to which
mooring or towing lines are secured aboard ship.
BITTER END The free end of a line.
BLOCK A frame containing a pulley, called
a sheave, around which a line (known as a fall)
BLOCK AND TACKLE See Purchase.
BOARD (1) The act of going aboard
vessel. (2) A group of persons meeting for
specific purpose, as an investigation board.
BOAT A small craft capable of being
carried aboard a ship.
BOAT BOOM A spar rigged out from the
side of an anchored or moored ship to which boats
are tied when not in use.
BOAT FALLS Tackle used to hoist and
lower a boat in davits.
BOATHOOK A staff having a hook at one
end. Used for fending a boat off, hooking a line,
BOATSWAINS CHAIR A seat attached to
a gantline for hoisting a person aloft.
BOATSWAINS LOCKER A compartment,
usually forward, where line and other equipment
used by the deck force are stowed.
BOLLARD A strong, cylindrical upright
fixture on a pier to which a ships mooring lines
BOOM A spar used for hoisting loads;
BOOT TOPPING Black paint applied to a
ships sides along the waterline.
BOW The forward end of a ship or boat.
BOW HOOK Member of a boats crew
whose station is forward.
BREAK OFF To walk away with a line or
run a line in, let go, return to the point from which
the line is being hauled, take a new hold, and walk
BREAK OUT To bring out supplies or
equipment from a storage space.
BREAST LINE Mooring line leading from
the ship to the pier at right angles to the ship.
BRIDGE Area in the superstructure from
which a ship is operated. See Conn.
BRIDLE A span of rope, chain, or wire with
both ends secured and the strain taken on the
BRIG Naval term for jail.
BROACH TO To get crosswise (without
power) to the direction of wave travel; particularly
dangerous near a beach.
BROAD Wide, as broad in the beam.
BROAD ON THE BOW Halfway between
dead ahead and abeam.
BROAD ON THE QUARTER Halfway
between abeam and astern.
BROADSIDE (1) The act of firing all main
battery guns to one side at once. (2) Sidewise, as
The current carried the ship broadside toward
the beach. Broadside to is to have the side
toward something, as The ship hit the pier