Archaic Definition of the Week – Futtocks

publishingFUTTOCKS, the middle division of a ship’s timbers; or those parts which are situated between the floor and the top-timbers …

As the epithet hooked is frequently applied in common language to any thing bent or incurvated, and particularly to several crooked timbers in a ship, as the breast-hooks, fore-hooks, after-hooks, &c. this term is evidently derived from the lowest part or foot of the timber, and from the shape of the piece. Hence.

– Wm. Falconer’s Dictionary of the Marine (1780).

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1 Comment

  1. Good word! Also, the ‘futtock shrouds’ are the small ladder things that the sailors used to climb from the ratlines up to the crow’s nests. Now I’m just dying to find a way to slip the word into conversation!

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