Meaning of “boatswain” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"boatswain" in British English

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boatswainnoun [ C ]

also bosun uk /ˈbəʊ.sən/ us /ˈboʊ.sən/

Examples from literature

  • A boatswain on board an English ship-of-war is a more important personage than he is apt to be on board an American. 
  • The boatswain and carpenter, and also the clerk, Mr. Samuel, were allowed to come upon deck. 
  • The boatswain had power to beat the laggards and the ship's boys with a cane, or with a piece of knotted rope. 
  • The boatswain, gunner, and carpenter, who are called the warrant-officers, always remain on board, even when the rest of the officers and crew are paid off, and the ship laid up in ordinary. 
  • This boatswain was a young man, who had been for some years a follower of the Admiral in different ships, and to whom he had just given a warrant. 

(Definition of “boatswain” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)