Definition of backstay:
In fact, toward the very last, he had about him a group of half a dozen marines who did nothing but load their firelocks and hand them to the commodore, who fired them from his own shoulder, standing on the quarter- deck rail by the main topmast backstay."- "Paul Jones", Hutchins Hapgood.
Spider, who had accompanied them, made his own way up the side, and seated on the hammock nettings, holding on by a backstay, was received with shouts of laughter by his old friends, he chattering away, seemingly as glad to see them as they were to greet him.- "The Three Lieutenants", W.H.G. Kingston.
- "South with Scott", Edward R. G. R. Evans.