She had furled every thing but the close-reefed main-topsail, and reefed foresail.
Perfectly cool, he stood waiting till the sails were reefed.
It was a quarter to one before both sails were reefed, and then the watch that had been on deck since eight o'clock turned in.
We had been under lower-topsails and a reefed foresail all night.
They kept up the jumbo sail, as the main jib is called; they reefed the foresail down to its smallest compass.
It blew so hard that the topsails had to be reefed at first, and then taken in.
The foresail and topsail were neither made fast nor reefed during the whole trip.
I shouted, and had the sense to hoist the reefed foresail at once.
No old-faced little boys in reefed man-trousers appealed to her sleeping pity.
The sail had been reefed, but it was as much as we could carry.
"rock ridge underwater," 1580s, riffe, probably via Dutch riffe, from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse rif "ridge in the sea; reef in a sail," literally "rib" (see rib (n.)).
"horizontal section of sail," late 14c. (mid-14c. in rif-rope), from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse rif "reef of a sail," probably a transferred use of rif "ridge under the sea; rib" (see rib (n.) and cf. reef (n.1)). German reff, Swedish ref, Norwegian riv, Danish reb likely all are from the Old Norse word.
1660s, "take in, roll up" (as a sail on a ship), from reef (n.2). Related: Reefed; reefing.
A strip or ridge of rocks, sand, or coral that rises to or near the surface of a body of water. See more at coral reef.