Photo of a ship.

List of nautical terms

Anything to do with sailing on the sea.

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Photo of an anchor
Photo by Thunderchild

An anchor is a device that is used to stop a ship or boat from drifting away. Anchors are made from heavy metal, and are hooked so they catch onto the seabed. They are attached to the ship by a long chain or rope, and are let down when the ship needs to be still, and lifted up when the ship needs to move again.

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Photo of a barge
Photo by Alex Thomson

A barge is a low boat with a flat bottom that was originally designed to move by being towed or pushed along. Barges were once propelled by pushing them along using a bargepole, or were pulled by a horse walking along the shore. Modern barges are propelled by motors.

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A berth might be a compact place you sleep when you are on a ship, train or plane. A berth is also the space a boat stays at when it comes to shore.

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Photo of a boat
Photo by Donika Sadiku

A boat is a vehicle that travels over water. Boats may be driven by the wind, by a motor, or by paddling them, like a canoe.

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Photo of the bow of a ship
Photo by Planetlight

The bow of a ship is the front end. It is easy to remember the bow as the pointy end of the ship, and the stern is the back or blunt end.

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A buoy (pronounced boo-ee) is a brightly colored floating marker that is anchored in place in the water. Buoys can be used to mark where deeper water is in a harbor so ships can safely navigate through.

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Photo of two men paddling a canoe
Photo by Benny Mazur

A canoe is a small, narrow boat that moves forward as you paddle, like the people in the picture.

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Photo of a capsized boat
Photo by Jim Sorbie

A boat is capsized when it has flipped upside down or onto its side, and can't be sailed until it is righted.

Photo of a catamaran
Photo by kansasphoto

A catamaran is a type of boat that has two hulls. The hulls are connected somehow, ranging from a simple connection with thin rods to the bulk of the boat forming the bridge.
Catamarans may be either sail or motor powered, and can be any size from tiny sailboats to quite large ships.

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Photo of a cruise ship
Photo by Thomas Quine

A cruise is a trip you take on a ship just for fun and pleasure.

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And also ...

Aft, Kayak.