One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
In or behind the stern of a ship.
- ‘A built-in motor bracket cuts cockpit noise and adds security in big seas from abaft.’
- ‘It's when the breeze comes from the side, and slightly abaft of abeam, that a vessel can achieve its fastest point of sail.’
- ‘With six months' stores, she draws twenty-two foot nine, abaft.’
- ‘The swell was either just abaft or on the beam and at night you couldn't see it.’
- ‘The blizzard made it impossible to see anything abaft of the bridge.’
- ‘Terry looked abaft himself and saw that the fearsome man had indeed gone.’
Nearer the stern than; behind.‘the yacht has a shower just abaft the galley’
- ‘The carpenter had turned the capstan just abaft the mainmast into a perfectly acceptable desk.’
- ‘Dropping down abaft the bridge, the first thing to come into view was the funnel.’
- ‘The first of two hatches to the control room section is immediately abaft the sail, being the main access into the boat.’
- ‘When a mainsail was set up in the correct place abaft the genoa, the strain on the headsail sheet was observed to rise considerably.’
- ‘With this security he had established as his right a caboose abaft the funnel in the midships Bofors gunshield where the gun had been removed.’
Middle English (in the sense ‘backwards’): from a- (expressing motion) + archaic baft ‘in the rear’.
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