Port and Starboard
Just like we have a left side and a right side, boats do, too.
left side of a boat name 
right side of a boat name

Just like we have a left side and a right side, boats do, too.

The left side of the boat is called port. The right side is called starboard.

Interesting Fact

Early boats had an oar that was used to steer the boat. This was called a steering oar.

Most sailors were right-handed. The placed the steering oar on the right-hand side at the back of the boat. The sailors began putting two Old English words together – steor and bord. Steor meant star and bord meant board. Today we call the right side of the boat Starboard.

When the boats became bigger, the steering oar did, too.  The bigger boats were tied to the dock on the side without the oar because it was a lot easier to do. The sailors started calling this side of the boat larboard. Larboard means loading side.

People became confused with larboard and starboard. The larboard was changed to port. Port was much easier to remember because the left side of the boat faced the port and its dock. People found the name easy to remember because the porters ported the supplies from the side that faced the port.

Port means to carry.

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Click the link to see pictures of boats with the steering oar.