boatswain

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Related to boatswains: boatswains chair, Boatswain's Mate

boatswain

, bosun, bo's'n
a petty officer on a merchant ship or a warrant officer on a warship who is responsible for the maintenance of the ship and its equipment

Boatswain

Byron’s favorite dog. [Br. Hist.: Harvey, 239]
See: Dogs
References in classic literature ?
I was so terrified in my thoughts at this outrageous attempt that I could not stay there, but went back to my own men, and resolved to go into the middle of the town, through the fire, or whatever might be in the way, and put an end to it, cost what it would; accordingly, as I came back to my men, I told them my resolution, and commanded them to follow me, when, at the very moment, came four of our men, with the boatswain at their head, roving over heaps of bodies they had killed, all covered with blood and dust, as if they wanted more people to massacre, when our men hallooed to them as loud as they could halloo; and with much ado one of them made them hear, so that they knew who we were, and came up to us.
As soon as the boatswain saw us, he set up a halloo like a shout of triumph, for having, as he thought, more help come; and without waiting to hear me, "Captain," says he, "noble captain
Upon these words, away ran eight of my men, with the boatswain and his crew, to complete their bloody work; and I, seeing it quite out of my power to restrain them, came away pensive and sad; for I could not bear the sight, much less the horrible noise and cries of the poor wretches that fell into their hands.
The boatswain gave the signal to weigh anchor, and leaping upon the middle of the gangway began to lay on to the shoulders of the crew with his courbash or whip, and to haul out gradually to sea.
The boatswain made another step, and Dag Daughtry glared a threat at him.
It was while I was on the LCT that I made second-class boatswains mate.
The knowledge and experience I've obtained from this exercise has been extremely helpful," agreed Boatswains Mate 2nd Class Emphraim Lee.
When the booty from a plundered ship was divvied up, the gap between top and bottom earners was relatively modest: "The captain and the quartermaster received between one and a half and two shares; gunners, boatswains, mates, carpenters, and doctors, one and a quarter or one and a half; all the others got one share each.