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[skahy-seyl; Nautical skahy-suh l] /ˈskaɪˌseɪl; Nautical ˈskaɪ səl/
noun, Nautical.
(in a square-rigged vessel) a light square sail next above the royal.
a triangular sail set on a stay between the fore and main trucks of a racing schooner.
Origin of skysail
First recorded in 1820-30; sky + sail Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for skysail
Historical Examples
  • And the guards led me on, and that was the last I saw of skysail Jack.

  • In these, the topgallant, royal and skysail masts are all one stick.

    The Seaman's Friend Richard Henry Dana
  • A triangular sail set above the skysail; if square it would be a moonsail, and if set above that, a star-gazer, &c.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • And skysail Jack and I peered and knew each other under the wreckage.

  • Then my freight pulled out, and I was on it, bound west on the trail of skysail Jack.

    The Road Jack London
  • Single iron cross-trees at the head of long topgallant-masts, to support royal and skysail masts.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • I shared my Java and grub with him, learned about skysail Jack, and then learned about him.

    The Road Jack London
  • He then gave a few directions to skysail, the first lieutenant, and ordering his gig to be manned, offered me a passage on shore.

    Frank Mildmay Captain Frederick Marryat
  • "It is the highest sail we set on the foremast, though larger vessels have a royal above that, then a skysail," I replied.

    Up the River Oliver Optic
  • By this means the skysail may be taken in or set without the necessity of sending a man aloft.

    The Seaman's Friend Richard Henry Dana
British Dictionary definitions for skysail


noun (nautical)
a square sail set above the royal on a square-rigger
a triangular sail set between the trucks of a racing schooner
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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