Idioms

    jump ship,
    1. to escape from a ship, especially one in foreign waters or a foreign port, as to avoid further service as a sailor or to request political asylum.
    2. to withdraw support or membership from a group, organization, cause, etc.; defect or desert: Some of the more liberal members have jumped ship.
    run a tight ship, to exercise a close, strict control over a ship's crew, a company, organization, or the like.
    when one's ship comes in/home, when one's fortune is assured: She'll buy a car as soon as her ship comes in.

Origin of ship

1
before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English scip; cognate with Dutch schip, German Schiff, Old Norse, Gothic skip; (v.) Middle English s(c)hip(p)en, derivative of the noun
Related formsship·less, adjectiveship·less·ly, adverbmis·ship, verb, mis·shipped, mis·ship·ping.pre·ship, verb (used with object), pre·shipped, pre·ship·ping.
Can be confusedbarge boat canoe cruise ship sailboat ship yacht

ship

2
[ship]Slang.

noun

a romantic relationship between fictional characters, especially one that people discuss, write about, or take an interest in, whether or not the romance actually exists in the original book, show, etc.: popular ships in fan fiction.

verb (used with or without object), shipped, ship·ping.

to discuss, write about, or take an interest in a romantic relationship between (fictional characters): I'm shipping for those guys—they would make a great couple!

Origin of ship

2
First recorded in 1995–2000; shortening of relationship

-ship

a native English suffix of nouns denoting condition, character, office, skill, etc.: clerkship; friendship; statesmanship.

Origin of -ship

Middle English, Old English -scipe; akin to shape; cognate with dialectal Frisian, dialectal Dutch schip
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for ship

Contemporary Examples of ship

Historical Examples of ship

  • I summoned him to an interview, and informed him in decided terms that I must be master in my own ship.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • He didn't go on board till the morning on which the ship was to sail.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • Then they launched the ship's boat, in which Bates had come to the island, and put out to sea.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • No; I stole one of the ship's boats, and came for you without leave.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • They saw an American ship riding at anchor a mile or more from shore.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger


British Dictionary definitions for ship

ship

noun

a vessel propelled by engines or sails for navigating on the water, esp a large vessel that cannot be carried aboard another, as distinguished from a boat
nautical a large sailing vessel with three or more square-rigged masts
the crew of a ship
short for airship, spaceship
informal any vehicle or conveyance
when one's ship comes in when one has become successful or wealthy

verb ships, shipping or shipped

to place, transport, or travel on any conveyance, esp aboard a shipship the microscopes by aeroplane; can we ship tomorrow?
(tr) nautical to take (water) over the side
to bring or go aboard a vesselto ship oars
(tr often foll by off) informal to send away, often in order to be rid ofthey shipped the children off to boarding school
(intr) to engage to serve aboard a shipI shipped aboard a Liverpool liner
informal (tr) to concede (a goal)Celtic have shipped eight goals in three away matches
See also ship out
Derived Formsshippable, adjective

Word Origin for ship

Old English scip; related to Old Norse skip, Old High German skif ship, scipfī cup

-ship

suffix forming nouns

indicating state or conditionfellowship
indicating rank, office, or positionlordship
indicating craft or skillhorsemanship; workmanship; scholarship

Word Origin for -ship

Old English -scipe; compare shape
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

Word Origin and History for ship
n.

Old English scip "ship, boat," from Proto-Germanic *skipam (cf. Old Norse, Old Saxon, Old Frisian, Gothic skip, Danish skib, Swedish skepp, Middle Dutch scip, Dutch schip, Old High German skif, German Schiff), "Germanic noun of obscure origin" [Watkins]. Others suggest perhaps originally "tree cut out or hollowed out," and derive it from PIE root *skei- "to cut, split."

Now a vessel of considerable size, adapted to navigation; the Old English word was used for small craft as well, and definitions changed over time; in 19c., distinct from a boat in having a bowsprit and three masts, each with a lower, top, and topgallant mast. French esquif, Italian schifo are Germanic loan-words.

Phrase ships that pass in the night is from Longfellow's poem "Elizabeth" in "Tales of a Wayside Inn" (1863). Figurative use of nautical runs a tight ship (i.e., one that does not leak) is attested from 1965.

v.

c.1300, "to send or transport (merchandise, people) by ship; to board a ship; to travel by ship, sail, set sail," also figurative, from ship (n.). Old English scipian is attested only in the senses "take ship, embark; be furnished with a ship." Transferred to other means of conveyance (railroad, etc.) from 1857, originally American English. Related: Shipped; shipping.

-ship

word-forming element meaning "quality, condition; act, power, skill; office, position; relation between," Middle English -schipe, from Old English -sciepe, Anglian -scip "state, condition of being," from Proto-Germanic *-skapaz (cf. Old Norse -skapr, Danish -skab, Old Frisian -skip, Dutch -schap, German -schaft), from *skap- "to create, ordain, appoint," from PIE root *(s)kep- (see shape (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with ship

ship

In addition to the idioms beginning with ship

  • ship of state
  • ship out
  • ships that pass in the night

also see:

  • desert a sinking ship
  • enough to sink a ship
  • shape up (or ship out)
  • tight ship
  • when one's ship comes in
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.