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William Falconer's Dictionary of the MarineReference Works
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Table of Contents

D

DAM to DEAD-WORK

DECKS to DEPTH of a sail

DETACHMENT of a fleet or squadro to DOCK-YARDS

DOG to DOWN-HAUL-TACKLE

To DOWSE to DRIVING

DROP to DUNNAGE
DROP
DUCKING
DUNNAGE


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DUCKING

DUCKING. (bâptême, Fr.) a sort of marine punishment inflicted by the French on those who have been convicted of desertion, blasphemy, or exciting sedition. It is performed as follows: the criminal is placed astride of a short thick batten, fastened to the end of a rope, which passes through a block hanging at one of the yard-arms. Thus fixed, he is hoisted suddenly up to the yard, and the rope being slackened at once, he is plunged into the sea. This chastisement is repeated several times, conformable to the purport of the sentence pronounced against the culprit, who has at that time several cannon-shot fastened to his feet during the punishment, which is rendered public by the firing of a gun, to advertise the other ships of the fleet thereof, that their crews may become spectators. Aubin.

DUCKING, is also a penalty which veteran sailors pretend to inflict on those, who, for the first time, pass the tropic of Cancer, the Equator, or the streights of Gibraltar, in consequence of their refusal or incapacity to pay the usual fine levied on this occasion, which would redeem them from the said penalty.


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© Derived from Thomas Cadell's new corrected edition, London: 1780, page 103, 2004
Published by South Seas, using the Web Academic Resource Publisher
To cite this page use: http://nla.gov.au/nla.cs-ss-refs-falc-0458