Have you ever been on board a boat and have you ever noticed that one side of the boat is called the starboard side? And, perhaps, you have often wondered why it is called this?
It is an interesting story that dates back many centuries to when ships were the primary means of transportation for people and goods crossing oceans and seas. This article will explain why the right side of a ship is called the starboard side and how it came to be called this. So, read along to explore this interesting story, and find out why the starboard side of a ship is known by this name.
Why is it Called Starboard?Starboard, which is also known as port-hand ruling, is a common nautical term used to describe the right side of a boat or ship when looking towards the bow (front) of the ship. Starboard is so named because, in the past, a starboard-type lamp was used to help guide sailors at night.
Origins of the TermThe origin of the word is thought to be from the Proto-Indo-European stem ‘stērbh’ which means to ‘steer’ or ‘direct’. This likely refers to the starboard-type lamp that was used to help guide sailors at night.
The English term derived from the Middle English ‘sterbord’ which was first used in the 15th century as a way of distinguishing the side of the ship that should be kept to when steering. The opposite side of the ship being known as the larboard or ‘Load Board’. It is believed that this distinction may have been linked to the ‘starboard tack’ – a term used to describe sailing off the right side of the ship, known as the starboard tack, when the ship was facing the starboard-type lamp.
Significance of StarboardThe starboard is an important nautical term that is used in various expressions today. For instance, many broadcast calls are made in communication with other ships, as well as during docking, mooring and even during fishing.
It is also used to refer to the ‘starboard bow’, which is the front right-hand side of the ship. Additionally, the term is used to refer to the side of the ship that should be used to pass any vessels when traveling in close proximity to each other, as it is believed to be the safest side to pass on.
This is why the directive ‘keep to starboard’ is said when referring to passing vessels.
SummaryThe term starboard originates from the Proto-Indo European stem ‘stērbh’ and has a range of importance in directing vessels and keeping them safe. It is used within the context of other broadcast calls as well as during docking, mooring and fishing.
The term is also used to refer to the front right-hand side of a boat or ship when looking towards the bow, and is important to recognize when providing directives for passing vessels in close proximity. Conclusion:Starboard is an important nautical term that is used in many different contexts to keep boats and ships safe. It is used to refer to the right side when looking towards the bow and is used in directives for passing vessels in close proximity. It originates from the Proto-Indo European stem ‘stērbh’ and was first used in the 15th century. Sources: https://www. dictionary. com/e/slang/starboard/https://www. etymonline. com/word/starboardhttps://www. oxfordreference. com/view/1093/oi/authority. 20110803095561286https://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Starboard