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  • Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Top-hamper (Naut) The upper rigging, spars, etc., of a ship. "All the ships of the fleet . . . were so encumbered with tophamper, so overweighted in proportion to their draught of water, that they could bear but little canvas, even with smooth seas and light and favorable winds."
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Top-hamper unnecessary weight on a ship's upper-deck
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. top; Ger. zopf.


In literature:

She heeled over upon the instant; then as the top hamper carried away with a crash, eased back a moment upon an even keel.
"Moran of the Lady Letty" by Frank Norris
Keate, have you heard of the flat-iron's top-hamper?
"Soldiers Three, Part II." by Rudyard Kipling
Well, you won't make land or anything else in a thousand years once you get all your top-hamper piled down on deck.
"The Mutiny of the Elsinore" by Jack London
Her whole top hamper was neat and becoming.
"Sketches New and Old, Complete" by Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
The hamper was all decorated with holly, and a little flag was stuck in the top.
"Sailor's Knots (Entire Collection)" by W.W. Jacobs
Think Mr. Coronado 's all right in his top hamper, Capm?
"Overland" by John William De Forest
The worst that can come, after all, of too much top-hamper, is to cut away, and let it drift with the scud.
"The Water-Witch or, The Skimmer of the Seas" by James Fenimore Cooper
That gal there, Tunis, seems to have lost her top-hamper.
"Sheila of Big Wreck Cove" by James A. Cooper
Cap'n Aaron Sproul's first impulse was the impulse of the sailor who beholds dangerous top-hamper dragging at a craft's side in a squall.
"The Skipper and the Skipped" by Holman Day
For the same reason, the small sails are sent on deck, together with as much top hamper as can readily be moved.
"The Lieutenant and Commander" by Basil Hall
They couldn't get the hamper into the cab, it had to go on the top.
"The Observations of Henry" by Jerome K. Jerome
A few minutes afterwards Dinah came through the hall with an armful of clothes and piled them in the hamper on top of Raggedy Ann.
"Raggedy Ann Stories" by Johnny Gruelle
So Burnaby got up and disposed of as much of himself as was possible in a hamper on the top of the cart.
"Faces and Places" by Henry William Lucy
A ship with more and heavier gear than necessary, so as to be top-hampered.
"The Sailor's Word-Book" by William Henry Smyth
Literature would be lighter without that scroll work and top hamper.
"Waiting for Daylight" by Henry Major Tomlinson
Take the clean tops of wicker baskets or hampers, and put the apples on the wickers in a cool oven.
"The Lady's Own Cookery Book, and New Dinner-Table Directory;" by Charlotte Campbell Bury
Keeping his eyes open and his mouth shut involved dropping all unnecessary "top-hamper" as he himself phrased it.
"Command" by William McFee
Then he flung back the top of the hamper and leaned forward eagerly.
"The Frontier Boys in the Sierras" by Wyn Roosevelt
Just take a glance at 'em, my PARTLET, I beg; They've too much top-hamper, they scarcely can scamper.
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 93, July 9, 1887." by Various
He turned away to help Rosa adjust the top of her hamper, which would not fit into place over the hard, round chestnuts.
"Shadows of Flames" by Amelie Rives

In news:

Nico Rosberg believes his Mercedes team can quickly get on the top of the tire degradation issues which hampered its chances in Australia.
Rifts among top UBS managers are hampering Chief Executive Sergio Ermotti's efforts to make big cutbacks, especially in investment banking, according to senior sources both inside and close to the bank.
An over-the-top plot, lackluster prose, and underdeveloped characters hamper this ostensible kickoff to a new thriller series from Cullen.
Top industry professionals say regulatory burdens hamper progress.

In science:

This measurement is also hampered by our ability to correctly assign jets to the parton-level ob jects in top decays.
Top Physics Results at CDF