• WordNet 3.6
    • v holystone scrub with a holystone "holystone the ship's deck"
    • n holystone a soft sandstone used for scrubbing the decks of a ship
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Holystone (Naut) A stone used by seamen for scrubbing the decks of ships.
    • v. t Holystone (Naut) To scrub with a holystone, as the deck of a vessel.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n holystone A soft sandstone used by seamen for scrubbing the decks of a ship. See the extract.
    • holystone To scrub with holystone, as the deck of a vessel.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • Holystone a sandstone used by seamen for cleansing the decks, said to be named from cleaning the decks for Sunday
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. hálig, lit. whole, perfect, healthy—hál, sound, whole; conn. with hail, heal, whole.


In literature:

Skipper Simms kept the men busy painting and holystoning as a vent for their pent emotions.
"The Mucker" by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Before we sail you can put in your time holystoning the deck.
"The Cruise of the Jasper B." by Don Marquis
In addition to this, it was holystoned every Saturday morning.
"Two Years Before the Mast" by Richard Henry Dana
The uncarpeted floor of narrow boards is caulked and holystoned like a deck.
"Heartbreak House" by George Bernard Shaw
On the third morning Katy woke and dressed so early, that she gained the deck before the sailors had finished their scrubbing and holystoning.
"What Katy Did Next" by Susan Coolidge
The thermometer fell to 18 degrees during the night, and the water froze on the decks during the holystoning.
"Voyage Of H.M.S. Rattlesnake, Vol. 2 (of 2)" by John MacGillivray
At five o'clock we have to get up and go inside again so they can holystone the deck.
"Parrot & Co." by Harold MacGrath
We'll holystone 'em an' slush 'em with hot tar if they give any trouble!
"The Outdoor Girls at Ocean View" by Laura Lee Hope
I'd holystone 'em till they was.
"Middy and Ensign" by G. Manville Fenn
Holystoning the deck or scrubbing it with fresh limes made his back ache and developed the wasted, flabby muscles.
"A Son Of The Sun" by Jack London
Her decks were as white as lime-juice and constant holystoning could keep them.
"The Naval History of the United States" by Willis J. Abbot
At about six every morning we are roused by the sailors holystoning the decks, under the superintendence of the officer of the watch.
"A Boy's Voyage Round the World" by The Son of Samuel Smiles
Holystone decks and wash down, ye lazy lubber.
"Blackbeard: Buccaneer" by Ralph D. Paine
No one seemed to be about, so he seized a pail half filled with sujee, a block of holystone, and a stiff broom.
"Peter the Brazen" by George F. Worts
A Lascar is standing by grinning, with a bucket of water and a deck-swab; they want to begin holystoning down the decks.
"Round the Wonderful World" by G. E. Mitton
There were sallies of wit: "Now's the time to pave the alley," "Pass the holystone," over this doughy circumstance.
"The Bonadventure" by Edmund Blunden
But we had "holystoning" decks enough to make up for it.
"The Story of a Strange Career" by Anonymous
Promptly at four bells the watch were gathered aft, and "holystoning" commenced.
"The Log of a Sea-Waif" by Frank T. Bullen
A small flint or stone having a natural hole in it, and worn as a charm, is also called a holystone.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 5" by Various