from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Any of various types of small cranes that project over the side of a ship and are used to hoist boats, anchors, and cargo.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A spar formerly used on board of ships, as a crane to hoist the flukes of the anchor to the top of the bow, without injuring the sides of the ship.
- n. a crane, often working in pairs and usually made of steel, used to lower things over an edge of a long drop off, such as lowering a maintenance trapeze down a building or launching a lifeboat over the side of a ship.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A spar formerly used on board of ships, as a crane to hoist the flukes of the anchor to the top of the bow, without injuring the sides of the ship; -- called also the fish davit.
- n. Curved arms of timber or iron, projecting over a ship's side of stern, having tackle to raise or lower a boat, swing it in on deck, rig it out for lowering, etc.; -- called also boat davits.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Nautical, one of a pair of projecting pieces of wood or iron on the side or stern of a vessel, used for suspending or lowering and hoisting a boat, by means of sheaves and pulleys.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a crane-like device (usually one of a pair) for suspending or lowering equipment (as a lifeboat)
Middle English daviot, from Norman French daviot, diminutive of Davi, David.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)