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water line

or waterline

Nautical. the part of the outside of a ship's hull that is just at the water level.
Naval Architecture. any of a series of lines on the hull plans of a vessel representing the level to which the vessel is immersed or the bottom of the keel.
the line in which water at its surface borders upon a floating body.
water level (def 2).
Also called watermark. a line indicating the former level or passage of water:
A water line all around the cellar served as a reminder of the flood.
a pipe, hose, tube, or other line for conveying water.
Origin of water line
First recorded in 1615-25 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for waterline
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • One man said the ship had been struck above the waterline and would float.

    Tom Slade with the Colors Percy K. Fitzhugh
  • A moment later, and the whole schooner was ablaze, from waterline to masthead.

    The Black Buccaneer Stephen W. Meader
  • Five of the nine left of the waterline outfit drove the herd.

    Rimrock Trail J. Allan Dunn
  • He had seen them before on their first unsuccessful trip to the waterline.

    Rimrock Trail J. Allan Dunn
  • He drove me off'n the waterline, him an' the ones that hang with him.

    Rimrock Trail J. Allan Dunn
  • Plimsoll's likely taken her over to the waterline range country.

    Rimrock Trail J. Allan Dunn
  • The ice-skin was then 12 1/2 inches above the waterline amidships.

  • Whitehead torpedoes are fired from tubes above or below the waterline.

    The Romance of Modern Invention Archibald Williams
British Dictionary definitions for waterline

water line

a line marked at the level around a vessel's hull to which the vessel will be immersed when afloat
a line marking the level reached by a body of water
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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Word Origin and History for waterline

1620s, line where the water rises to on the hull of a ship afloat, from water (n.1) + line (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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