reef

2 ENTRIES FOUND:

1reef

noun \ˈrēf\

Definition of REEF

1
:  a part of a sail taken in or let out in regulating size
2
:  reduction in sail area by reefing

Origin of REEF

Middle English riff, from Old Norse rif; probably akin to Old Norse rīfa to rend — more at rive
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Nautical Terms

avast, aweigh, flotsam, jib, keel, lee, port, starboard, stay

Rhymes with REEF

2reef

verb

Definition of REEF

transitive verb
1
:  to reduce the area of (a sail) by rolling or folding a portion
2
:  to lower or bring inboard (a spar) wholly or partially
intransitive verb
:  to reduce a sail by taking in a reef
reef·able \ˈrē-fə-bəl\ adjective

First Known Use of REEF

1667

Other Nautical Terms

avast, aweigh, flotsam, jib, keel, lee, port, starboard, stay

3reef

noun

Definition of REEF

1
a :  a chain of rocks or coral or a ridge of sand at or near the surface of water — compare atoll, barrier reef
b :  a hazardous obstruction
2
:  lode, vein
reefy \ˈrē-fē\ adjective

Origin of REEF

Dutch rif, from Middle Dutch, from Old Norse, literally rib; akin to Old English ribb rib — more at rib
First Known Use: 1584

Other Oceanography Terms

littoral, sound

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