Ahoy! Abaft is a word used on boats. If something is abaft, it’s towards the rear, or stern, of a boat. Abaft means “in the back.”

Though rarely heard on dry land, this old seafaring word refers to the rear end of a ship. Abaft can also refer to the back end of an airplane. Even if you’re not a sailor (or pilot), if you read Moby Dick or other stories of the sea, then you’ll need to know what abaft means. Think of the word after when you see that aft on the end.

Definitions of abaft

adv at or near or toward the stern of a ship or tail of an airplane

“ships with square sails sail fairly efficiently with the wind abaft
aft, astern
fore, forward
near or toward the bow of a ship or cockpit of a plane

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