- a kind of knot, hitch, or bend made on a rope to shorten it temporarily.
Origin of sheepshank
First recorded in 1635–45; short for sheepshank knot; literal sense unclear
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for sheepshank
The sheepshank knot serves to shorten a rope without cutting it, and may be presently loosened.The Sailor's Word-Book
William Henry Smyth
- a knot consisting of two hitches at the ends of a bight made in a rope to shorten it temporarily