1

sail

play
noun \ˈsāl, as last element in compounds often səl\

Definition of sail

  1. 1a (1) :  an extent of fabric (as canvas) by means of which wind is used to propel a ship through water (2) :  the sails of a shipb plural usually sail :  a ship equipped with sails

  2. 2 :  an extent of fabric used in propelling a wind-driven vehicle (as an iceboat)

  3. 3 :  something that resembles a sail; especially :  a streamlined conning tower on a submarine

  4. 4 :  a passage by a sailing craft :  cruise

sailed

play \ˈsāld\ adjective

under sail

  1. :  in motion with sails set

Examples of sail in a sentence

  1. Wind filled the sails and our journey had begun.

  2. raising and lowering the ship's sails

  3. a sail to San Francisco

Illustration of sail

Origin and Etymology of sail

Middle English, from Old English segl; akin to Old High German segal sail


First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Nautical Terms


2

sail

verb

Definition of sail

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1a :  to travel on water in a shipb :  yacht

  3. 2a :  to travel on water by the action of wind upon sails or by other meansb :  to move or proceed easily, gracefully, nonchalantly, or without resistance <sails through all sorts of contradictions — Vicki Hearne> <the bill sailed through the legislature>c :  to move through the air <the ball sailed over his head>

  4. 3 :  to begin a water voyage <sail with the tide>

  5. transitive verb
  6. 1a :  to travel on (water) by means of motive power (as sail)b :  to glide through

  7. 2 :  to direct or manage the motion of (as a ship)

sailable

play \ˈsā-lə-bəl\ adjective

sail into

  1. :  to attack vigorously or sharply <sailed into me for being late>

Examples of sail in a sentence

  1. We'll sail along the coast.

  2. He sailed around the world on a luxury liner.

  3. She sailed the Atlantic coastline.

  4. She's sailing a boat in tomorrow's race.

  5. The ship was sailed by a crew of 8.

  6. I've been sailing since I was a child.

  7. a ship that has sailed the seven seas

  8. We sat on the shore watching boats sail by.

  9. We sail at 9 a.m. tomorrow.

  10. They sail for San Francisco next week.

Before 12th Century

First Known Use of sail

before 12th century

Other Nautical Terms



SAIL Defined for English Language Learners

1

sail

play
noun \ˈsāl, as last element in compounds often səl\

Definition of sail for English Language Learners

  • : a large piece of strong cloth that is connected to a ship or boat and that is used to catch the wind that moves the ship or boat through the water

  • : a trip in a ship or boat


2

sail

verb

Definition of sail for English Language Learners

  • : to travel on water in a ship or boat

  • : to control a ship or boat (especially one that has sails) while traveling on water

  • of a ship or boat : to travel on water


SAIL Defined for Kids

1

sail

play
noun \ˈsāl\

Definition of sail for Students

  1. 1 :  a sheet of strong cloth (as canvas) used to catch enough wind to move boats through the water or over ice

  2. 2 :  the sails of a ship <They lowered sail as they approached the bay.>

  3. 3 :  a trip in a ship or boat moved especially by the wind <We went for a sail on the lake.>


2

sail

play
verb

Definition of sail for Students

sailed

sailing

  1. 1 :  to travel on a boat moved especially by the wind <He sailed around the world.>

  2. 2 :  to travel on or by water <Boats sailed by.>

  3. 3 :  to control the motion of (a ship or boat) while traveling on water

  4. 4 :  to move or proceed in a quick and smooth way <The ball sailed over my head.>



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