Shrouds are parts of the standing rigging of a ship which holds up a mast. There are usually several shrouds connected to the top of the mast and are connected to the port and starboard sides to the ship at the chains. This give support to the mast from the force of the wind on the sails and the rolling action of the ship. Ratlines are short lines that are tied from shroud to shroud to provide support to each other and also provides a means of climbing to the tops of the mast.

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