One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A fore-and-aft sail whose spar is nearly vertical and acts as a mast extension.
2historical A type of rig in which the topmast slides up and down the lower mast on rings.
- ‘A spar pivoted round till it is nearly parallel to the mast [think: like a paper fan], creating a triangular sail, is called a gunter rig.’
- ‘It was called the gunter by seamen and was an important step in the development of the slide rule.’
Late 18th century: named after E. Gunter (see Gunter's chain).
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