the tackle-rope,


Senior Member
Hi folks, this is cited from Wellingborough Redburn by Hermann Melville (1849)

Question: if master beat them with his saber (not sharp side but its flat side)what I must understand this phrase that “they were beaten with flat of saber and jumped with the tackle of rope in their hands?” Or Was he beating them with this “tackle of rope?) It seemed to me a bit vague.

In discharging the cargo, his business seemed to consist in flagellating the crew with the flat of his saber, an exercise in which long practice had made him exceedingly expert. The poor fellows jumped away with the tackle-rope, elastic as cats.
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The poor fellows moved quickly in their job of dealing with the tackle-rope - [when he hit them] the men became as agile as cats.

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