Sailor Speak of the Week – In (vs. On) a ship

Definition

Verb

  • “In” refers to being a member of a ship’s crew.

Origin

19th century.

Comments

The distinction being that “in a ship” refers to a person who is a member of the crew, versus “on a ship” which is being a passenger (non-crew member). Apparently, the semantic difference is mostly for purists (or the British).

References

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

One comment

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