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load line

noun, Nautical.
Also called Plimsoll line. any of various lines marked on the sides of a cargo vessel to indicate the depth to which a vessel may be immersed under certain conditions.
Compare freeboard (def 1a).
the line made by the surface of the water on the hull of a loaded ship.
Origin of load line
1880-85 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for load-line
Historical Examples
  • load-line, line painted on the outside of a vessel to mark the extreme of immersion in loading her with a cargo.

    The Nuttall Encyclopaedia Edited by Rev. James Wood
British Dictionary definitions for load-line

load line

(nautical) a pattern of lines painted on the hull of a ship, approximately midway between the bow and the stern, indicating the various levels that the waterline should reach if the ship is properly loaded under given circumstances
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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