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Unformatted text preview: a measurement over water. Origin of Nautical Terms Fathom- Sailors use to throw a line into the water, wait until it hit the bottom, pull it back up, while measuring the length of the line from finger tip to finger tip. The arm span of an average sailor was 6 feet and called a fathom. Knot- Lines used to be thrown over the sides of ships to determine speed. Each line was divided into 47 ft. 3 in. sections and were called knots. The line was allowed to run over the ship's side while a 28-second glass was emptying itself. The length of the knot was derived from the proportion that one hour (3600 sec) is to 28 seconds as one mile (6076.115 ft.) is to the length of one knot (47 ft. 3 in.)...
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- Summer '09