OCEAN LINER GLOSSARY


 
 


[A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H] [I] [J] [K] [L] [M] [N] [O] [P] [Q] [R] [S] [T] [U] [V] [W] [X] [Y] [Z] - [Bottom]
-A-
Abandon ship
        The call given to leave the ship quickly, in the case of an emergency.

Ahead
        A direction referring to the bow, or front of the ship.  Also, used to tell the ships
        helmsman to move the vessel forward, and at a certain speed.  For example:
         1. Ahead slow, or ahead dead slow.
         2. Ahead 1/4, or ahead 1/3.
         3. Ahead 1/2, or ahead 2/3.
         4. Ahead Flank, or ahead full.

Aft
        The back of the ship.  See also Stern.

All stop
        A request for the engines to be stopped completely.

Amidships
        The center point of the ship.  Also known as the middle.

Anchor
        A large, and very heavy, arrow shaped piece of steel or iron,
        used to help keep the ship from drifting or being carried off
        by the currents or tides.  And to minimize or limit the ships drift.

Anchor chain
        The large, and very heavy chain that retains the anchor(s) to a ship.

Anchor well
        The place on a ship, where the anchor(s), and their chains are stored.


-B-
B.P.
        The measurement of "Between Perpendiculars", the vertical frame spars
        that make up the bow and stern sections of the ship, it is this that shows the
        base dimensions, and determines the real "overall length" of a ship.

Back
        A request to the helmsman, and the engine room for put the engines in reverse.

Blue Ribband
        The award given to the fastest ship, to cross the Atlantic ocean, and
        do so in a record time.

Boat deck
        The deck on which the lifeboats reside.  This deck is now enclosed on
        most or all of the modern ships.

Boilers
        The gigantic boilers, are exactly what they are called.  They boil
        water to produce steam.  This steam pressure is used to drive the
        turbines.  See also Engines, Turbines.

Bollard
        The heavy to headed steel or iron device used to tie up a ship to its pier.

Bon'Voyage
        Something nice you say to someone taking a trip.

Bow
        The front of the ship.  See also Forward.

Bow stem
        The stem or post, the is in, or protrudes from the bow of a ship.

Bow thrusters
        The little fans, that are built into the bow, under water to turn the ship for docking.
        Or they can be used for stationary control and movement.

Breadth
        The measurement of a ships width at the amidships, on the waterline.
        This measurement determines the exact width of the ship, in feet and inches.

Bridge
        The command and control center of a ship.  See also Forecastle.

Bridge deck
        The deck level where the bridge, wheel house, etc. are located on a ship.


-C-
Capstans
        The large brass or bronze "mushroom" shaped blobs on the deck of
        a ship.

Captain
        The man or woman in charge of a ship or sailing vessel.  A ships captain,
        is also known as her master.

Cargo
        The freight, or items a ship carries to a designated destination.

Cargo Manifest
        The list of all of the cargo that the ship is carrying.

Cast off
        To drop the mooring lines, and begin a voyage.

Charts
       Their term for the "maps" the captain and his officers use to navigate the ship.

CLIA
        Cruse Line Industry Association.  To visit their web site, click here.

Coal
        The coal fired engines have not been used since about the tim ot the
        first world war.  The industry shifted engines to oil fire, after that.
        And later in the 1940's and early 1950's most of the ships were then
        converted to diesel engines.

Compass
        A small device that will always point to magnetic north.
        This is the direction of the known magnetic north pole of the
        earth, and is used to help navigate the ship.

Compass deck
        The top deck, where the compass tower was placed.  Pre- 1930's ships.

Cranes
        The cranes are used to load and unload heavy cargo from the ship.

Crew
        The people who operate the ship.  And assist the passengers.

Crossing
        A term for a ship sailing East, or West bound, to or from another place.

Crows nest
        A place where lookouts can watch for reefs, scholls, or even
        approaching icebergs.

Cruise
        To ride around on a cruise ship.

Cruise line
        The company, that owns, operates, maintains, and manages a cruise ship.

Cruise ship
        A ship that is built for only cruising, and giving its passengers fun and a relaxed time.

Cruising
        What people do on a cruise ship...

Current
        A directional flow of a body of water, usually fast enough to take
        a ship and / or persons out to sea, in a relatively short period of time.


-D-
Davit
        The place a lifeboat sits, until it is needed.  And this same device
        is also used to raise, or lower the lifeboat into or from the sea.
        See also Wellin Davit.

Deck
        The wood planks, that make up the floor of the vessel.

Depth sound
        A process of using Sonar to figure out how deep the water is beneath
        you, and to see what the conditions are like on the ocean floor.

Diesel
        Many of the newer ships, no longer have the original coal, or oil
        fired steam engines.  They all have the modern turbo-electric diesel
        engines.  These engines are far more efficient, and produce vastly
        greater horsepower.  And are much quieter than their predecessors.

Dock
        The place where the ship will be tied to a pier.  This is where the
        ship be fuelled, loaded with cargo, and boarded by her passengers.

Dock side
        A pier, or port system.  With equipment, and personnel to assist the ship.

Docking
        The process of "tying" a ship up to a pier, so the tides won't pull it away.

Docking bridge
        The bridge control center located on the Fantail.

Draught
        The depth in feet, that a ships hull is under water, from the water-
        line to the keel.  See also Waterline.

Dry dock
        The place at the shipyard where the sea water can be drained
        and the keel of the ship may be repaired, modified, cleaned, or
        painted.


-E-
Engine Room
        The place on a ship where the "engines" are located, and controlled.

Engineer
        A crew member of the engineering staff, who works in the engine room.

Engineering
        The process of designing the mechanics of something.  The "term" applied to
        a ships Engine Room.

Engines
        The motors of the ship.  These are connected to the shafts that
        turn the screws.

Engraving
        The place in the shipyard known as the "graving dock", where the
        skin of a ship is applied.


-F-
Fan tail
        The aft deck space of a ship.

Fathom
        A fathom is approx. 6 feet.  Water depth is determined to be "n" fathoms deep.

Fitting out
        The process of which a ship is being constructed and then
        subsequently launched.  This is where the ships interiors
        will be added, and all the internal workings of the ship
        will be completed.  Also, most of the external superstructures are
        also finished.  Her accommodations are also finished, and living
        spaces are completed, and furnished.

Fittings
        The "hard" parts, and features of a vessel.

Flooding
        A term for "the ship is taking on water!"

Fo'c'sle
        An "old" sailors term for the forecastle deck, or its spaces.

Forecastle
        The area that comprises the main bridge, signal bridges, and
        and the wheel house of a ship.  The Captain and his officers
        can usually be found here.  Also known as the Fo'c'sle.

Funnel
        A large oval or cylindrical tube, from which the ships exhaust
        is released.  In some cases, some ships actually have more
        than funnel.

Furnishings
        The interiors and furniture of a vessel.


-G-
Galley
        The kitchen aboard a ship.

Gang plank
        A walkway used by the crew or passengers, to board a vessel.

Gang way
        A term for the place where a "gang plank" is found, or a term for
        "Clear the area I am coming through here."

GRT
        Gross Registered Tonnage.  A measurement of a ships listed
        weight in the passenger areas as prior to her fitting out.


-H-
Hardcover
        A term for "turn the wheel all the way over."  The vessel will turn in its
        own tight turning radios.

Head
        A term for the potty, facilities, rest room, "Jon", Throne, etc...  :o)

Helm
        The wheel, and the controls of the vessel.  On the bridge.

Hold
        A place to store all the stuff, during a voyage.

Hull
        The ships "body".  In which are contained the decks, the cabins, and
        all mechanics the comprise the ship.  Also a town in England.


-I-
Ice field
        A group or collection of smaller pieces of ice moving together.  This is
        sometimes known as an "ice pack".

Ice flow
        A field of ice moving in the currents of the water.  Very dangerous.

Ice pack
        See Ice flow.

Iceberg
        A large frozen mass of ice, that can be very very large, and is
        hazardous to ships.

Iceberg right ahead!
        What you would say if you saw an iceberg in the path of the ship
        ship you were travelling on.

Ice Patrol
        The job the U.S. Coast Guard does to watch for ice bergs.  See also IIP.

IIP
        International Ice Patrol.  Founded by the US Congress.  It is run by the US Coast Guard.

IMM
        International Maritime Mercantile.  Now defunct.
        Immigrant - A person who "moves" themselves from one country to live permanently.

Immigrant
        A person who migrates from one place to another.

Immigrants
        A group of people who are immigrating.

Immigration
        The process of person(s) who are migrating from one place to another.


-J-
Jack staff
        The aft flag pole, located on the vessels stern.

Juggernaut
        A term coined, by the author "Jules Vern", for the "Nautilus",
        the fictional Capt. Nemo's submersible.


-K-
Keel
        The base line and center beams of the ships hull, at the bottom center.

Kiel
        A city in Germany.

Knot
        A nautical mile.  The length of this is approx. 6,000 feet.  A bit more than a
        standard (SAE) mile, which is 5,280 feet.

Knots
        The speed in nautical miles per hour, a vessel is travelling.


-L-
Lifeboat
        A small wooden boat, that can usually hold about 60 people, to
        help them escape a sinking ship.  A lifeboat is usually about
        40' long, and 8' wide, and 4' deep.

Life raft
        A small inflatable raft that can hold a small group of people.

Lifelong
        A small circular ring or tube, used to keep a single individual afloat.

Lift
        The elevator or lift on a ship, for passengers or crew to easily go
        from one deck to another.

Lieutenant
        A rank given to a commissioned officer, of the military.

Lower away
        The call given to quickly lower the lifeboats, in the case of an emergency.


-M-
Marconi
        The Marconi wireless is a marvel invention.  It uses a series of
        dots and dashes, to send letters and numbers through the air, as
        an electric signal.  i.e. S O S = ". . .  - - - . . .".

Marine
        A broadly used term for the "small" craft, and non-military, or non-commercial maritime.

Maritime
        A term for anything having to do with the ocean or sea going industry.

Master
        The Captain, or "Skipper" of a vessel.  It's highest ranking officer.

Mast
        The large and very tall wooden posts that stick out of the decks on
        a ship, and the main mast, normally has the crows nest on it.

Mate
        A crew member, or seaman.

Mess hall
        The dining spaces aboard a ship.

Moor
        This means to tie a ship to its pier.

Muster
        To come front and center, to attend, or be counted present.
        All crew must "muster" when called by their superiors.


-N-
Navigate
        To use a map or chart, and a compass, and traverse the distance safely.

Navigation
        The process of navigating.  Using the tools to follow a course and travel.

Nautical
        The term given for an "ocean" or "sea" based subject.

Nautilus
        The name given to Jules Verns fictional submarine.  From the story of
        20,000 leagues under the sea.

North pole
        The northern most point on the planet Earth.

North star
        A large bright star, seen at night, used to assist the navigation of ships at sea.


-O-
Ocean
        A very large, and very deep body of water on the planet.
         For example, the Atlantic, Pacific, Indian, Arctic, and Antarctic.

Officer
        A ranking crew member.  Usually one of the Captains assistants.

Oceanographer
        A person who studies the oceans and their creatures.

Oceanographic
        A term given to an institution or group of oceanographers.

Oceanography
        The study of the oceans, and their creatures.

Overboard
        A term for someone who has either fallen, or jumped over the side of the ship.


-P-
Pacific
        The largest body of water on Earth.

Particulars
        The specifications of a given ship.  Her dimensions, weight, etc.

Pennant
        The flag, insignia, or logo, of a company.  Each ship files the flag
        of their company.

Pier
        The dock, or mooring place for a ship.

Port
        1. A place for a ship to go.  i.e. New York, or Miami, or Southampton.
        2. The left side of a ship.

Port authority
        The governing group of persons, who own, runs, maintains, and manages the port.

Port hole
        The window in the hull of a ship, you can look out of.  And portholes, are
        found on the port and starboard sides of a ship.

Promenade deck
        The deck below the boat deck.

Props
        An acronym for propellers.  See also Screws.

Purser
        A member of the crew who will assist you, somewhat like a secretary.

Pursers office
        The office where the purser works, and stores items to be held.


-Q-
Quartermaster
        The usual rank of a ships helmsman.  The man who steers a ship.

Quarters
        A place where a passenger or crew member lives.


-R-
Radio Room
        The room on a ship, where the radio, and it's operator can be found.

Rake
        The angle in degrees that something leans from it's nearest vertical center.

Rank
        A designation of authority, in levels, assigned to members of the ships crew.

Rigging
        The cables, ropes, ties, etc., onboard a ship.

Rudder
        The big flat piece of steel, that when turned, will steer a ship.


-S-
Salon
        A fancy room to sit and talk or read.

Sea
        A large body of water, bigger than a river, but smaller than an ocean.
        For example, Caspian Sea, Black Sea, Aegean Sea, etc...

Screws
        The ships propellers.  These are fan shaped, and have 3 or more
        blades, that are angled, and are rounded off.  And are used to
        propel the ship forward or backwards.

SCUBA
        Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus.  The air tank, hoses, mask etc.

Sextant
        A device used to aid the captain, in the navigation of his or her ship.

Shafts
        The large elongated cylinders, made of nickel, steel, or bronze
        that turn the propellers.

Sick bay
        The hospital, or doctors office, aboard a ship.

SOLAS
        Safety Of Life At Sea.  An act of the US government, to prevent death at sea.

Starboard
        The right side of a ship.

Station
        A place where a crew person works.

Stateroom
        Another name for a cabin aboard a ship.

Steward
        A male cabin attendant.

Stewardess
        A female cabin attendant.

Stokers
        The brave young men who stoked the ships boilers full of coal.
        To keep it moving, so it can reach its destination.

Submarine
        The underwater version of a ship.

Submersible
        A craft that can go underwater and explore, and collect samples.

Suite
        A fancy and expensive cabin.

Sun deck
        The top most deck of a ship. Because it is always in the sun, during the day.


-T-
Tide pool
        A small body of water, in which remains an amount of water after the tides have
        come and gone.

Tides
        The rising and falling of the level of the oceans, or seas.  This
         is due to the pull on the surface of the earth from the moon in our
         planets orbit.

 Tie off
        To tie up a ship to the pier, much like docking.

Tie up
        See Tie off.

Tri Blade
        A propeller with 3 blades on it.  This was the common type before the 1930's.

Trials
        The first time the ship sails on its own power, and is put to sea
        by her Captain, to work out any kinks she might have.  It is also
        a time to do some checking, and testing of the ship features and
        functionality.

Triple Expansion Engines
        The type of engines, that many early 20th century ocean liners had been
        given to provide power, and propulsion.

Triple screw
        A vessel being driven by 3 propellers.

Tug
        See Tugboat.

Tugboat
        A tugboat, is a small or mini "worker" to push, pull, or move the ships in the harbour.

Turbines
        A type of engine drive, that uses high pressure steam to turn a set of angled blades,
        and turn the shafts, that turn the propellers..

Twin screw
        A vessel driven by 2 propellers.


-U-

-V-
Vessel
        Another name for a ship, or boat.

-W-
Water
        A product of nature.  The earth has lots of it.  Chemical formula is H2O.

Watertight
        Something that can not be penetrated by, leak water or any other liquids.

Watertight compartments
        A section of a ship that is watertight.

Well deck
        The recessed deck space at the bow or stern of the ship, one level below
        the poop deck space.

Wheel
        The steering wheel, used to "drive" or "steer" a vessel.

Wheel house
        The place on the bridge where the wheel is.

Waterline
        The waterline, is exactly what it says.  This is the location
        where the surface of the water meets the hull of the ship.

Well deck
        The well deck is the place between the passenger and crew areas
        of the ship and the bow, and the stern.  This usually has the
        cranes, cargo hatches, etc.  And is normally off limits to the
        ships passengers.  As it is considered crew spaces.

Wellin Davits
        The mechanical arms, that with ropes, operated the
        lifeboats on the Titanic, and her sisters.

Wheel
        The wheel will turn the rudder, and steer the ship.

Wheel house
        The place where the wheel is.  Usually on the bridge.

WHOI
        Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.  Where Dr. Robert D. Ballard
        works.  He discovered the RMS Titanic, which sank in 1912.

Winch
        a small flat or squat looking "crane" style cable reel, with a crank, or motor to return the line.

Windlass
        A cable that runs from the deck, or a line winch, to a mast, funnel, or other large object.

Wireless
        See Marconi.


-X-

-Y-
Yeoman
        A lower ranking crew member.

-Z-

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