Definition of Topsail

1. Noun. A sail (or either of a pair of sails) immediately above the lowermost sail of a mast and supported by a topmast.

Specialized synonyms: Fore-topsail
Generic synonyms: Canvas, Canvass, Sail, Sheet



Definition of Topsail

1. n. In a square-rigged vessel, the sail next above the lowermost sail on a mast. This sail is the one most frequently reefed or furled in working the ship. In a fore-and-aft rigged vessel, the sail set upon and above the gaff. See Cutter, Schooner, Sail, and Ship.

Definition of Topsail

1. Noun. (nautical) A sail or either of the two sails rigged just above the course sail and supported by the topmast on a square-rigged sailing ship. ¹

2. Noun. (nautical) In a fore-and-aft -rigged sailing boat, the sail that is set above the gaff at the top part of the mast. ¹

¹ Source: wiktionary.com

Definition of Topsail

1. a sail of a ship [n -S]

Topsail Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Topsail

topple over
toppled
topples
toppling
toppling gait
topplings
toppo
toppy
toppyup
tops
tops'l
tops(p)
tops-and-bottoms
tops it off
tops up
topsail (current term)
topsails
topscorer
topscorers
topside
topsider
topsiders
topsides
topsite
topsites
topsman
topsmen
topsoil
topsoiled
topsoiling

Literary usage of Topsail

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Chambers's Encyclopaedia: A Dictionary of Universal Knowledge for the People (1868)
"A schooner uses the same sails as a cutter, except that, in one form, »ke carries a square topsail and topgallant-sail on the foremast. ..."

2. Scientific American Reference Book by Albert Allis Hopkins, Alexander Russell Bond (1913)
"... A, is a leg of mutton, Ba lug, Ca split lug, Da sloop (having a single mast and only fore and aft sails}, Ea sloop having a gaff topsail, Fa lateen rig, ..."

3. Scientific American Reference Book by Albert Allis Hopkins, Alexander Russell Bond (1913)
"S the jigger, 9 the fore topsail. 10 the main topsail, 11 the mizzen topsail, 1- the fore gaff topsail, 13 the main gaff topsail. ..."

4. The New American Practical Navigator: Being an Epitome of Navigation by Nathaniel Bowditch (1826)
"The fore topsail ought to be braced sharp a-back, the main and mizen topsails kept full, because these two last mentioned sails tend to give the ship ..."

5. Seamanship: Comp. from Various Authorities, and Illustrated with Numerous by Stephen Bleecker Luce (1877)
"The booms on the topsail-yard are usually sent up by the halliards, ... To measure for mam-topsail clew-lines, for example, supposing them to go double, ..."

6. Chambers's Encyclopædia: A Dictionary of Universal Knowledge (1868)
"it is set prefixed, as ' fore-topsail,1 ' main-royal,1 I AC The square-sails are made fast by their heads I to yards, the foot being drawn to the extremity ..."

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