Sailor Speak of the Week – Locker



  • A cabinet, cupboard, or small room used to store materials.


Probably earlier than the early 17th century. From the Old English word loc, meaning barrier.


Naturally, this refers to the small securable storage compartments you see in schools or train stations to store your things. In nautical parlance, it can also refer to a room that is used to store specific equipment. For example, a paint locker is a room where paint is stored, the Bosun’s locker contains equipment for the Boatswain’s Mates, and so on. A light-locker is where you send green sailors on a snipe hunt to change non-existent lightbulbs.


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

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