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From Middle English abord, from a- (on) + bord (board, side of a ship). (Equivalent to a- +‎ board.)


  • (UK) IPA(key): /əˈbɔːd/
  • (US) IPA(key): /əˈbɔɹd/
  • (file)
    Sailors aboard the USS O'Kane.


aboard (not comparable)

  1. On board; into or within a ship or boat; hence, into or within a railway car. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470).][1]
    We all climbed aboard.
  2. On or onto a horse, a camel, etc. [First attested in the late 19th century.][1]
    To sling a saddle aboard.
  3. (baseball) On base. [First attested in the mid 20th century.][1]
    He doubled with two men aboard, scoring them both.
  4. Into a team, group, or company. [First attested in the mid 20th century.][1]
    The office manager welcomed him aboard.
  5. (nautical) Alongside. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470).][1]
    The ships came close aboard to pass messages.
    to fall aboard of. (also figuratively)




  1. On board of; onto or into a ship, boat, train, plane. [First attested around 1350 to 1470.][1]
    • 2012 March 1, William E. Carter, Merri Sue Carter, “The British Longitude Act Reconsidered”, American Scientist, volume 100, number 2, page 87: 
      Conditions were horrendous aboard most British naval vessels at the time. Scurvy and other diseases ran rampant, killing more seamen each year than all other causes combined, including combat.
    We all went aboard the ship.
  2. Onto a horse. [First attested in the mid 20th century.][1]
  3. (obsolete) Across; athwart; alongside. [Attested from the early 16th century until the late 17th century.][1]
    • 1591, Edmund Spenser, Virgil's Gnat
      Nor iron bands aboard The Pontic Sea by their huge navy cast. - Edmund Spenser

Derived terms[edit]

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Lesley Brown (editor), The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 5th edition (Oxford University Press, 2003 [1933], ISBN 978-0-19-860575-7), page 6