4 definitions found

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

Reef \Reef\ (r[=e]f), noun [Akin to D. rif, G. riff, Icel. rif, Dan. rev; cf. Icel. rifa rift, rent, fissure, rifa to rive, bear. Cf. {Rift}, {Rive}.]

1. A chain or range of rocks lying at or near the surface of the water. See {Coral reefs}, under {Coral}.

2. (Mining.) A large vein of auriferous quartz; -- so called in Australia. Hence, any body of rock yielding valuable ore.

{Reef builder} (Zool.), any stony coral which contributes material to the formation of coral reefs.

{Reef heron} (Zool.), any heron of the genus {Demigretta}; as, the blue reef heron ({Demigretta jugularis}) of Australia.

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

Reef \Reef\, noun [Akin to D. reef, G. reff, Sw. ref; cf. Icel. rif reef, rifa to basten together. Cf. {Reeve}, verb (used with an object), {River}.] (Naut.) That part of a sail which is taken in or let out by means of the reef points, in order to adapt the size of the sail to the force of the wind.

Note: From the head to the first reef-band, in square sails, is termed the first reef; from this to the next is the second reef; and so on. In fore-and-aft sails, which reef on the foot, the first reef is the lowest part. --Totten.

{Close reef}, the last reef that can be put in.

{Reef band}. See {Reef-band} in the Vocabulary.

{Reef knot}, the knot which is used in tying reef pointss. See Illust. under {Knot}.

{Reef line}, a small rope formerly used to reef the courses by being passed spirally round the yard and through the holes of the reef. --Totten.

{Reef points}, pieces of small rope passing through the eyelet holes of a reef-band, and used reefing the sail.

{Reef tackle}, a tackle by which the reef cringles, or rings, of a sail are hauled up to the yard for reefing. --Totten.

{To take a reef in}, to reduce the size of (a sail) by folding or rolling up a reef, and lashing it to the spar.

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

Reef \Reef\, verb (used with an object) [imp. & p. p. {Reefed} (r[=e]ft); p. pr. & vb. n. {Reefing}.] (Naut.) To reduce the extent of (as a sail) by rolling or folding a certain portion of it and making it fast to the yard or spar. --Totten.

{To reef the paddles}, to move the floats of a paddle wheel toward its center so that they will not dip so deeply.

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) [wn]:



1: a submerged ridge of rock or coral near the surface of the water

2: a rocky region in the southern Transvaal in northeastern South Africa; contains rich gold deposits and coal and manganese [syn: {Witwatersrand}, {Rand}, {Reef}]

3: one of several strips across a sail that can be taken in or rolled up to lessen the area of the sail that is exposed to the wind


1: lower and bring partially inboard; "reef the sailboat's mast"

2: roll up (a portion of a sail) in order to reduce its area

3: reduce (a sail) by taking in a reef

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Monday, March 30, 2015 4:13:34 PM Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)