Sailing boat / sailboat

  • scotu

    Senior Member
    Chicago English
    I noticed it as one of the phrases at the top of the page today. I think I've only heard "sailboat" aside from poetry and song.
    Yes, sailing boat is one of the terms in "next weeks terms." I agree whith you that at least in AmE the term is rarely heard. I posted the question to see if it is used in another form of English.

    Thank you both for the responses.
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Might be a cross-Atlantic difference again. Sailing boat is the more familiar term for me.

    Similarly: sparking plug v. spark plug.

    Afterword: I've just checked in Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English and 'sailing boat' and 'sparking plug' are indeed labelled 'British English'.
     
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    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Might be a cross-Atlantic difference again. Sailing boat is the more familiar term for me.
    I grew up with "sailing boat" but according to the ngram at https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=sailing+boat,sailboat&year_start=1800&year_end=2000&corpus=18&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1;,sailing boat;,c0;.t1;,sailboat;,c0, "sailboat" has been the dominant form in BrE since about 1980 (due, no doubt, to the influence of AmE, which has a number of compound nouns formed like their German equivalents, such as "cookbook" which, again according to ngram, overtook "cookery book" in BrE around 1960).
     

    Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    We say "sailboat" in AE, not "sailing boat," but we say "sailing ship" for the large ones that transported people and goods across oceans before steam power came into use.
     
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