One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A running noose formed by tying a bowline knot at one end of a rope and passing the other end through the resulting loop; a similar noose used when one end of the rope is already fast, formed by tying a bowline knot around the standing part of the rope.
Early 18th century; earliest use found in Charles Shadwell (fl. 1692–1720).
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