lateen sail


lateen sail
a triangular sail set on a long sloping yard, used esp. on the Mediterranean Sea.
[1720-30]

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sail
      triangular sail that was of decisive importance to medieval navigation. The ancient square sail permitted sailing only before the wind; the lateen was the earliest fore-and-aft sail. The triangular sail was affixed to a long yard or crossbar, mounted at its middle to the top of the mast and angled to extend aft far above the mast and forward down nearly to the deck. The sail, its free corner secured near the stern, was capable of taking the wind on either side, and, by enabling the vessel to tack into the wind, the lateen immensely increased the potential of the sailing ship.

      The lateen is believed to have been used in the eastern Mediterranean as early as the 2nd century AD, possibly imported from Egypt or the Persian Gulf. Its effective use by the Arabs caused its rapid spread throughout the Mediterranean, contributing significantly to the resurgence of medieval commerce. Combined with the square sail, it produced the ocean-conquering full-rigged ship. The Sunfish class of one-design sailboats is lateen-rigged.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • lateen sail — n. [F. voile latine a sail in the shape of a right angled triangle; cf. It. & Sp. vela latina; properly Latin sail. See {Latin}.] (Naut.) A triangular sail, extended by a long yard, which is slung at about one fourth of its length from the lower… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • lateen sail — ► NOUN ▪ a triangular sail on a long yard at an angle of 45° to the mast. ORIGIN from French voile Latine Latin sail , so named because it was common in the Mediterranean …   English terms dictionary

  • lateen sail — lateen′ sail n. naut. navig. a triangular sail set on a long sloping yard, used esp. on the Mediterranean Sea • Etymology: 1720–30 …   From formal English to slang

  • lateen sail — noun a triangular fore and aft sail used especially in the Mediterranean • Syn: ↑lateen • Hypernyms: ↑fore and aft sail • Part Holonyms: ↑lateen rig * * * a triangular sail set on a long sloping yard, used esp. on the Mediterranean Sea. [1720 30] …   Useful english dictionary

  • lateen sail — [la ti:n] noun a triangular sail on a long yard at an angle of 45° to the mast. Origin C16: from Fr. (voile) Latine Latin (sail) , so named because it was common in the Mediterranean …   English new terms dictionary

  • LATEEN SAIL —    a triangular sail common on the Mediterranean …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • lateen sail — /ləˈtin seɪl/ (say luh teen sayl) noun a triangular sail extended by a long tapering yard, slung at about one quarter the distance from the lower end, which is brought down at the tack, used in xebecs, feluccas, etc., on the Mediterranean …   Australian English dictionary

  • lateen — la*teen , a. 1. (Naut.) Of or pertaining to a peculiar rig used in the Mediterranean and adjacent waters, esp. on the northern coast of Africa; pertaining to a lateen sail. See below. [1913 Webster] 2. rigged with a triangular (lateen sail). Syn …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • lateen-rigged — adj. rigged with a triangular (lateen sail). Syn: lateen. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • lateen-rig — n. the rig on a sailing vessel with a lateen sail. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English


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