Sail Definition

Other Sail Definition

[n] an ocean trip taken for pleasure
[n] a large piece of fabric (as canvas) by means of which wind is used to propel a sailing vessel
[v] travel by boat on a boat propelled by wind or by other means; "The QE2 will sail to Southampton tomorrow"
[v] traverse or travel by ship on (a body of water); "We sailed the Atlantic"; "He sailed the Pacific all alone"
[v] move with sweeping, effortless, gliding motions; "The diva swept into the room"; "Shreds of paper sailed through the air"; "The searchlights swept across the sky"
[v] travel in a boat propelled by wind; "I love sailing, especially on the open sea"


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Misc. Definitions

\Sail\, n. [OE. seil, AS. segel, segl; akin to D. zeil, OHG. segal, G. & Sw. segel, Icel. segl, Dan. seil. [root] 153.]
1. An extent of canvas or other fabric by means of which the wind is made serviceable as a power for propelling vessels through the water. Behoves him now both sail and oar. --Milton.
2. Anything resembling a sail, or regarded as a sail.
3. A wing; a van. [Poetic] Like an eagle soaring To weather his broad sails. --Spenser.
4. The extended surface of the arm of a windmill.
5. A sailing vessel; a vessel of any kind; a craft. Note: In this sense, the plural has usually the same form as the singular; as, twenty sail were in sight.
6. A passage by a sailing vessel; a journey or excursion upon the water. Note: Sails are of two general kinds, {fore-and-aft sails}, and {square sails}. Square sails are always bent to yards, with their foot lying across the line of the vessel. Fore-and-aft sails are set upon stays or gaffs with their foot in line with the keel. A fore-and-aft sail is triangular, or quadrilateral with the after leech longer than the fore leech. Square sails are quadrilateral, but not necessarily square. See Phrases under {Fore}, a., and {Square}, a.; also, {Bark}, {Brig}, {Schooner}, {Ship}, {Stay}. {Sail burton} (Naut.), a purchase for hoisting sails aloft for bending. {Sail fluke} (Zo["o]l.), the whiff. {Sail hook}, a small hook used in making sails, to hold the seams square. {Sail loft}, a loft or room where sails are cut out and made. {Sail room} (Naut.), a room in a vessel where sails are stowed when not in use. {Sail yard} (Naut.), the yard or spar on which a sail is extended. {Shoulder-of-mutton sail} (Naut.), a triangular sail of peculiar form. It is chiefly used to set on a boat's mast. {To crowd sail}. (Naut.) See under {Crowd}. {To loose sails} (Naut.), to unfurl or spread sails. {To make sail} (Naut.), to extend an additional quantity of sail. {To set a sail} (Naut.), to extend or spread a sail to the wind. {To set sail} (Naut.), to unfurl or spread the sails; hence, to begin a voyage. {To shorten sail} (Naut.), to reduce the extent of sail, or take in a part. {To strike sail} (Naut.), to lower the sails suddenly, as in saluting, or in sudden gusts of wind; hence, to acknowledge inferiority; to abate pretension. {Under sail}, having the sails spread.
\Sail\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Sailed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Sailing}.] [AS. segelian, seglian. See {Sail}, n.]
1. To be impelled or driven forward by the action of wind upon sails, as a ship on water; to be impelled on a body of water by the action of steam or other power.
2. To move through or on the water; to swim, as a fish or a water fowl.
3. To be conveyed in a vessel on water; to pass by water; as, they sailed from London to Canton.
4. To set sail; to begin a voyage.
5. To move smoothly through the air; to glide through the air without apparent exertion, as a bird. As is a winged messenger of heaven, . . . When he bestrides the lazy pacing clouds, And sails upon the bosom of the air. --Shak.
\Sail\, v. t.
1. To pass or move upon, as in a ship, by means of sails; hence, to move or journey upon (the water) by means of steam or other force. A thousand ships were manned to sail the sea. --Dryden.
2. To fly through; to glide or move smoothly through. Sublime she sails The a["e]rial space, and mounts the wing[`e]d gales. --Pope.
3. To direct or manage the motion of, as a vessel; as, to sail one's own ship. --Totten.

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