Dictionary

1yacht

noun \ˈyät\

: a large boat that is used for racing or pleasure

Full Definition of YACHT

:  any of various recreational watercraft: as
a :  a sailboat used for racing
b :  a large usually motor-driven craft used for pleasure cruising
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Origin of YACHT

obsolete Dutch jaght, from Middle Low German jacht, short for jachtschip, literally, hunting ship
First Known Use: 1557

Other Nautical Terms

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

2yacht

verb

Definition of YACHT

intransitive verb
:  to race or cruise in a yacht

First Known Use of YACHT

1836

Other Nautical Terms

avast, aweigh, flotsam, jib, keel, lee, port, starboard, stay
YACHT Defined for Kids

yacht

noun \ˈyät\

Definition of YACHT for Kids

:  a small ship used for pleasure cruising or racing

Word History of YACHT

In the 1500s the Dutch developed a kind of fast-moving sailing ship for use in coastal waters and river mouths. These vessels were called by the name jaght, short for jachtschip or jageschip in Dutch and German dialects—literally, hunting ship or pursuit ship. The word was soon borrowed into English as yoath or yaught. The spelling jacht or yacht became widespread after 1660, when the English king Charles II was given such a boat, dubbed the Mary, by the Dutch East India Company. The king chose to use the boat for excursions and racing, and the word yacht became attached to other vessels used for the same purposes.

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