Sailor Speak of the Week – Belay



  • To make fast, secure, tie, or stop


Derived from Old English, belecgam. Same meaning. Modern spelling from the 16th century.


Commonly heard as an order. For example, “Belay my last” meaning, ignore what I just said.


Rogers, J.G. (1985). Origins of Sea Terms. Mystic, CT: Mystic Seaport Museum.

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