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topgallant sail

noun, Nautical.
a sail or either of two sails set on the yard or yards of a topgallant mast.
Also called topgallant.
Origin of topgallant sail
First recorded in 1580-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for topgallant
Historical Examples
  • They had contrived happily to get hold of the topgallant halyards.

    The Three Midshipmen W.H.G. Kingston
  • Four sails were used on a mast—main, top, topgallant, and royal.

    All Afloat

    William Wood
  • The corvette had handed her royals, presently she took in her topgallant sails.

    The Rival Crusoes W.H.G. Kingston
  • There, just rising above the horizon, were seen the topgallant sails of a ship.

    Sunshine Bill W H G Kingston
  • Let go the topgallant and topsail halliards, and clew up and furl the sails.

    The Rover's Secret Harry Collingwood
  • Hand royals and topgallant sails,” he sang out; “be smart, my lads.

    Twice Lost W.H.G. Kingston
  • First her topgallant sails, then her topsails, rose out of the water.

    Dick Cheveley W. H. G. Kingston
  • You see, I have taken the topgallant sails off the brig, so as not to be seen.

    Held Fast For England

    G. A. Henty
  • We were within two miles of her when she up courses and took in her topgallant sails.

    Peter Simple Frederick Marryat
  • No sooner had he reached the topgallant rigging than he reported me dead.

    Rattlin the Reefer Edward Howard
British Dictionary definitions for topgallant


/ˌtɒpˈɡælənt; nautical təˈɡælənt/
Also called topgallant mast. a mast on a square-rigger above a topmast or an extension of a topmast
Also called topgallant sail. a sail set on a yard of a topgallant mast
(modifier) of or relating to a topgallant
Word Origin
C16: from top1 + gallant
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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