One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The sail above a sailing ship's foresail.
- ‘They also have on display the actual foretopsail that was rigged on the Victory during the battle.’
- ‘The puff died away immediately, however, and no damage was done beyond the splitting of the foretopsail.’
- ‘The foretopsail is smallish and easy to work on because we can stand in the working top on the foremast.’
- ‘Southern hemisphere ships and non-Venn ships of the north were all fore-and-aft rigged, though many had square foretopsails; raffees had square foresails with triangular foretopsails.’
- ‘If the close-reefed foretopsail is carried instead of the main, it can be easily filled.’
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