Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To be driven steadily and swiftly, as before a strong wind; to be driven before the wind without any sail, or with only a part of the sails spread; to scud under bare poles.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To be driven steadily and swiftly, as before a strong wind; to be driven before the wind without any sail, or with only a part of the sails spread; to scud under bare poles.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Nautical, to sail steadily and rapidly, as before the wind.
  • To cause to scud, as before the wind.

Etymologies

Probably from spume foam. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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Comments

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  • If it had wine in it, it wouldn't have frozen solid. Maybe it was a type of slushy. ;-)

    February 25, 2008

  • Actually, in these books, they drink sherbet all the time. Which must be something other than the frozen confection we frequently enjoy with spoons nowadays.

    February 25, 2008

  • So I looked this up. Here's what I found:

    1) To be driven steadily and swiftly, as before a strong wind; to be driven before the wind without any sail, or with only a part of the sails spread; to scud under bare poles.

    2) A kind of sherbet made from fruit juice or wine, mixed after freezing with uncooked meringue.

    I sure hope O'Brian's using it in the first sense. It could get rather messy otherwise.

    February 25, 2008

  • "'When virtue spooms before a prosperous gale
    My heaving wishes help to fill the sail

    says Dryden, that prince of poets, and the dear knows we spoom in the most virtuous manner. I suggest we all go and blow into the mainsail...'" (102)

    and...

    "'Come, have a cup of coffee to keep your spirits up, Mowett; then we shall go on deck, where virtue spooms before the goddam gale, and our heaving wishes will help to fill the sail, ha, ha, ha! That is Dryden, you know.'"
    --Patrick O'Brian, The Reverse of the Medal, 105

    February 24, 2008