Did You Know?

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Ahoy, me mateys! We’re going back to the sea for this week with some Navy terminology I found at navy.mil – good stuff over there!

Someone who is “above board” is thought to be honest and forthright, but back in the day of pirates this came from when pirates would masquerade as honest merchantmen, hiding most of their crew behind the bulwark (side of the ship on the upper deck). They hid below the boards.

Feeling Blue? Here’s where that comes from! “If you are sad and describe yourself as “feeling blue,” you are using a phrase coined from a custom among many old deepwater sailing ships. If the ship lost the captain or any of the officers during its voyage, she would fly blue flags and have a blue band painted along her entire hull when returning to home port.”

This one is pure awesomeness and I would have never thought of it! Gun salutes. They’re poignant and we know what they mean today, a farewell, a goodbye and an honor but back in the old days gun salutes were first fired as an act of good faith. In the days when it took so long to reload a gun, it was a proof of friendly intention when the ship’s cannon were discharged upon entering port.

And there you have it! Another DYK. Man, do I love these things! If you have one share it, either in the comments or I’m always open to your own post on a Thursday if you have a few you know and want to share 🙂

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