To find the depth of water under the ship, sailors would swing a lead weight attached to a uniformly knotted rope (marked in fathoms) over the side and feel when it touched the bottom. The wet knots showed the depth. This job was regarded as the easiest one on the ship
By SailingQuiz November 2019 Category: Nautical Saying
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What does Swinging the lead mean?
What is the nautical origin of the phrase "Swinging the lead"?
Definition of the nautical phrase "Swinging the lead".