taffrail

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English[edit]

Naval Captain on the Poop Deck Taffrail, by William Heysmann Overend

Etymology[edit]

From either tafferel or aft rail, by false alteration.

Noun[edit]

taffrail ‎(plural taffrails)

  1. (nautical) The curved wooden top of the stern of a sailing man-of-war or East Indiaman, usually carved or decorated.
  2. (nautical) The rail around the stern of a ship.
    • 1833, Edgar Allan Poe, "MS. Found in a Bottle," [1]
      One evening, leaning over the taffrail, I observed a very singular, isolated cloud, to the N.W.
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, Chapter 29, [2]
      [] with heavy, lumber-like pace he was measuring the ship from taffrail to mainmast []
    • See also citations under tafferel.
  3. (nautical) The deck area at the stern of a vessel.

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