[ UK /ˈə‍ʊkəm/ ]
  1. loose hemp or jute fiber obtained by unravelling old ropes; when impregnated with tar it was used to caulk seams and pack joints in wooden ships
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How To Use oakum In A Sentence

  • Some were set to scrubbing and cleaning, others to picking oakum, and eight of us were convoyed across the street to the Whitechapel THE SPIKE
  • Ulcers are to be treated by the application of stimulating dressings, such as carbolized oil, a 1 per cent solution of nitrate of silver or of chlorid of zinc, with pads of oakum and flannel bandages. Special Report on Diseases of the Horse
  • You are losing daylight quickly, picking at the tough fibers that hold the fruit together, unable to separate them as if they were strands of oakum waiting to be picked and untwisted by slaves.
  • Oakum said, “Ay, ay, I see they are both in a story;” and dismissed my fellow-mate to his cockloft, although I proposed that he and I should read and translate, separately, any chapter or verse in the Greek Testament in his possession, by which it would appear whether we or the surgeon spoke truth. The Adventures of Roderick Random
  • Oakum, who leaned against the mizen-mast, no sooner saw me approach in my shirt, with the sleeves tucked up to my armpits, and my hands dyed with blood, than he signified his displeasure by a frown, and asked why the doctor himself did not come? The Adventures of Roderick Random
  • Oakum, without any farther hesitation, ordered the fellow to be unfettered; at the same time, threatening to make Morgan exchange situations with him for his spite; but the Briton no sooner heard the decision in favour of the madman, than he got up to the mizen-shrouds, crying to Thompson and me to get out of his reach, for we should see him play the devil with a vengeance. The Adventures of Roderick Random
  • He caulked the chasms with philosophic oakum, he 'payed' them with dialectic pitch, he sheathed them with copper and brass by means of audacious dogmatism and insolent quibbles, until the enemy seemed to have been silenced, and the vessel righted so far as to float. Theological Essays and Other Papers — Volume 2
  • The powder crackled, fizzed, and spluttered and spilled out the excess of gasolene from the flaming oakum balls so that streams of fire dripped down on the main deck beneath. CHAPTER XLVII
  • Beneath a lantern on the forecastle deck I saw a few wretched sailors hunched in apelike postures pounding oakum between the decking planks. STONE THE CROWS, IT'S A VACUUM-CLEANER
  • Some tutors attempt the _suaviter in modo_, my schoolmaster preferred the _fortiter in re_, and, as the boatswain said, by the "instigation" of a large knotted stick, he drove knowledge into our skulls as a caulker drives oakum into the seams of a ship. Frank Mildmay The Naval Officer
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