To scuttle a ship is to bore a hole in it in order to make it sink.
Rather strangely, this word is from the same root as our word shut or bolt (Saxon scyttel, a lock, bolt, or bar). It was first
applied to a hole in a roof with a door or lid, then to a hatchway in
the deck of a ship with a lid, then to a hole in the bottom of a ship
plugged up; then comes the verb to pull out the plug, and leave the
hole for the admission of water.
(of coals, etc.) is the Anglo-Saxon, scutel,
“The Bergen [Norway] fishwomen ... in every direction are coming ...
with their scuttles swinging on their arms. In Bergen fish is never
carried in any other way.” —H. H. Jackson: Glimpses of Three
Coasts, pt. iii. p. 235.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
More on Scuttle from Fact Monster:
- What does it mean? glim - glim -- Listen to the pronunciation: WAV format or AU format As the pirates made ready to scuttle ...
- Spee, Maximilian, Graf von - Spee, Maximilian, Graf von Spee, Maximilian, Graf von , 1861–1914, German admiral. At the ...
- The Monitor - Two American warships that marked a revolution in naval warfare
- Canadian National Railway - Canadian National Railway Canadian National Railway, rail system in Canada and the United States, ...
- Scapa Flow - Scapa Flow Scapa Flow , area of water, 15 mi (24 km) long and 8 mi (12.9 km) wide, in the Orkney ...