The question from the title sounds ridiculous, but there is a reason for it. Different languages
have different names
for the staysail
, the triangular sail attached to the forestay
, with the tack
in the bow and trimmed with sheets, one at each side. The English language is usually the official language in terms of what’s what on a sailing yacht
but that does not always apply. Again, in different countries different dialects are used for the naval terminology so some terms originate from coastal dialects
of the country.
Basically, the jib
is basically a triangle-shaped sail
placed ahead of the foremast
and does not reach aft of the mast. The genoa
) is pretty much the same, but with a slight difference in reach
. It is a large foresail
that reaches aft past the mast and extends beyond the luff of the mainsail. Mediterranean sailors would use the word genoa for the foresail regardless of its reach. More knowledgeable ones would make a difference with adding some percentage. For example, a 120% genoa
would actually be a foresail that reaches around 20% of its foot length beyond the luff of the mainsail
. A 100% genoa
would then be a foresail that reaches exactly to the luff of the mainsail. It might seem difficult in theory, but it is simple to understand in reality.
If you charter a sailing yacht
or sail with an international crew, then take five minutes for a short briefing about the names for the crucial parts of the yacht
and make the consensus about terminology. At the end of the day, genoa
are the same words just as Genoa
are the names for the same city in Italy. My next quest would be to find a link between the name of the city and the slang name for the sail.
I wish you a calm sea, a fine wind and a strong mast!