Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Clipper, a word of somewhat doubtful etymology, possibly from a German or Norse word meaning to run fast, is used to denote a sailing vessel whose lines and rigging and general arrangement were considered most conducive to speed. Baltimore, in the United States of America, was specially noted for the building of clippers. Before the general adoption and improvement of steam locomotion, clippers were of much importance, and the race home of the tea-clippers from China was a matter of great interest in many ways. Now the clipper is chiefly important in yacht-racing and similar ornamental or pleasure sailing, since in ordinary navigation if speed is required steam is employed, and if it is not required, the build of the vessel is a matter of small moment.