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In the architecture of a ship, a companion or companionway is a raised and windowed hatchway in the ship's deck, with a ladder leading below and the hooded entrance-hatch to the main cabins. [1] A companionway may be secured by doors or, commonly in sailboats, hatch boards which fit in grooves in the companionway frame. This allows the lowest board to be left in place during inclement weather to minimize water infiltration. [2] The term may be more broadly used to describe any ladder between decks. [3]

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  1. Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Companion"  . Encyclopædia Britannica . Vol. 6 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 795.
  2. Simon, Alvah (11 March 2014). "Companionway Design: Down The (Main) Hatch". Cruising World. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  3. Keegan, John (1989). The Price of Admiralty . New York: Viking. p.  277. ISBN   0-670-81416-4.