adjective, adverb Nautical.

as close to the wind as a vessel will sail, with sails as flat as possible; full and by.

Origin of close-hauled

First recorded in 1760–70 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for close-hauled

Historical Examples of close-hauled

  • Both of us close-hauled, but we being starboard tack have the right of way.

    Sonnie-Boy's People

    James B. Connolly

  • The Sylvania was close-hauled, and I gave out the course south south-east.

    Up the River

    Oliver Optic

  • “Yes; she is close-hauled, beating down Channel,” observed Clement.

    Tales of the Sea

    W.H.G. Kingston

  • The log is hove repeatedly,—seven, seven-and-a-half, close-hauled.

    Rattlin the Reefer

    Edward Howard

  • This was an agreeable change after all our close-hauled tacking in the Channel.

British Dictionary definitions for close-hauled



nautical with the sails flat, so as to sail as close to the wind as possible
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