Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Nautical A sail, such as a jib, set forward of a foremast.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any sail (of a sailing vessel) set forward of the foremost mast.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any sail set forward of the foremast.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any sail set forward of the foremast of a vessel

Etymologies

head +‎ sail (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • From for'ard came the jerking rattle of headsail halyards through the sheaves.

    A SON OF THE SUN

  • In last night's darkness we helplessly listened to the men loosing headsail-halyards and letting yards go down on the run.

    CHAPTER XLIII

  • Ivor Wilkins Red Dragon, a 51. 7-meter sloop Alloy launched in 2008, displays its name on its headsail in Chinese.

    Come Sail Away

  • Tom hoists a staysail (a triangular headsail) and mizzen (the sail on the rear mast), now that they finally have wind.

    OVERBOARD !

  • Back on deck, alone and miles from land, it took me more than two hours to slowly clear the deck, lash the broken rigging in place, and cut away the tangled headsail.

    True Spirit

  • Bruce had to yell across the water to tell me to furl in the headsail so that Jesse Martin, Mike Perham, and the customs guys could board.

    True Spirit

  • But till I was able to furl almost all of the headsail away and pull the tiny third reef in, we were heeled over pretty dramatically.

    True Spirit

  • Under just a scrap of headsail, to slow us down, we sailed along the beach, around the headland full of waving people, and toward the breakwaters.

    True Spirit

  • Then I had a small mechanical problem to sort out, a few other jobs to do, and I swapped the headsail over to the spare because the old one was looking a little scruffy.

    True Spirit

  • Lines or ropes that allow you to control the headsail.

    True Spirit

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