SHIP TO SHORE: A Dictionary of Everyday Words and Phrases Derived from the Sea

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9780071440271: SHIP TO SHORE: A Dictionary of Everyday Words and Phrases Derived from the Sea

“One of the best dictionaries of sea terms ever.”

—Library Journal

Bail out. The coast is clear. In deep water. These are just a few of the seafaring terms that have become part of our common language. But where do they come from, and what do they really mean? Peter Jeans provides all the answers in this book which was named a “Best Reference Source” by Library Journal.

In his journey to uncover word origins, Jeans paints a vivid picture of hardy Nantucket whalers and Elizabethan sea dogs, grizzled Nova Scotia fishermen and the crews of great clipper ships. Along the way, he recounts the exploits of such seafaring greats as Sir Francis Drake, Captain Cook, and John Paul Jones.

More than a dictionary, Ship to Shore is a fascinating chronicle of the sailing men who made an enduring contribution to the English language. Here readers will find origins of words and phrases such as:

  • Listless
  • Peepers
  • To turn turtle
  • Sundowner
  • Unstayed
  • To come in with flying colors
  • Blowhard
  • To be taken aback

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From the Inside Flap:

We All Talk Like Sailors

Have you ever found yourself "in deep water" because you got tired of "bowing and scraping" or listening to "flimsy" excuses? Have you ever "barged in" like a "blowhard" where you weren’t wanted and "let the cat out of the bag"? Have you ever tried to keep a "touch-and-go" project "on an even keel" even though your "fair-weather" coworkers were deserting like "rats from a sinking ship"? Have you ever tried and failed to make "heads or tails" of the advice of a "fly-by-night" consultant or seen your work go "down the hatch"? Ever felt like you’ve "hit rock bottom" or reached "the bitter end"?

Well, "press on," mate, because no matter how low you sink, you’re not "breaking new ground." "By and large," no matter how bad it feels, untold generations of sailors have been there "off and on" before you, and if you’ll just "rummage around" in this wonderful book, you’ll see that they invented the language we all resort to when we’re in "dire straits" and there’s "the devil to pay." You may never escape these "trying times," but don’t let it "overwhelm" you. At least you know how to talk like a sailor! And when you "tackle" this book, you’ll plunge "full steam ahead" into the rich and wonderful lore of the sea. Yes, now that you’ve "gotten wind of" Ship to Shore, there are "free and easy" hours ahead. The "coast is clear." Your ship has just come in.

"Peter Jeans is a wonderful writer; his prose is fluid and punctuated with wry humor. . . . Ship to Shore is an entertaining browse for all word-lovers and armchair sailors."—Bloomsbury Review

Peter Jeans began his love affair with seafaring lore more than forty years ago. A sometime adventurer, English teacher, and columnist, he is also an avid sailor and writer whose books include Seafaring Lore and Legend: A Miscellany of Maritime Myth, Superstition, Fable, and Fact.

About the Author:

Peter Jeans (Australia) is an avid writer and sailor. He is also the author of Long Road to London and Seafaring Lore & Legend: A Maritime Miscellany of Myth, Superstition, Fable, and Fact.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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