from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A thick pad of rope-yarns, oakum, etc., covered with a mat or canvas, and tapering from the middle toward the ends, used as a fender on the bow of a boat.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A quantity of rope-yarn, or the like, placed, as a fender, on the bow of a boat.
  • noun A bunch of soft material to prevent chafing between spars, or the like.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun nautical Fibres of old rope packed between spars, or used as a fender.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • These fellows, as well as thieves generally, are said to have a method of quieting the fiercest watch-dogs by throwing them a narcotic ball, which they call "puddening the animal."

    The Dog

  • "No, that would not exactly tell; I shall pick my own work, and that's where I can bring my tarry trousers to an anchor -- mousing the mainstay, or puddening the anchor, with the best of any.

    Snarley-yow or The Dog Fiend


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  • "Puddening of a Boat's Stem, is a quantity of rope-yard pointed and placed firmly on the stem of the boat as a kind of fender....

    "Puddening the Ring of an Anchor, is the act of well parcelling it with tarred canvas, and then warping it round with twice-laid-stuff....

    "Puddening of a Mast, a thick wreath, or circle of cordage, tapering from the middle towards the ends, pointed all over, and fastened about the mainmast and foremast of a ship...."

    Falconer's New Universal Dictionary of the Marine (1816), 359–360

    See also dolphin of the mast.

    October 12, 2008

  • "She bore as much resemblance to her ordinary self as the rigid bosun, sweating in a uniform coat that must have been shaped with an adze, did to the same man in his shirt-sleeves, puddening the topsail yard in a heavy swell; yet there was an essential relationship, and the snowy sweep of the deck, the painful brilliance of the two brass quarter-deck four-pounders, the precision of the cylinders in the cable-tier and the parade-ground neatness of the galley's pots and tubs all had a meaning."

    Master and Commander by Patrick O'Brian, p 30 of the Norton paperback edition

    July 5, 2019