While a full-rigged ship is square-rigged on all three masts, and the barque is square-rigged except for the mizzen-mast, the barquentine extends the principle by making only the foremast square-rigged. The advantages of a smaller crew, good performance before the wind and the ability to sail relatively close to the wind while carrying plenty of cargo made it a popular rig at the end of the nineteenth century.
Today, barquentines are popular with modern tall ship and sail training operators as their suite of mainly fore-and-aft sails improve non-downwind performance, while their foremast of square sails offers long distance downwind speed and dramatic appearance in port.
The term "barquentine" is seventeenth century in origin, formed from "barque" in imitation of "brigantine", a two-masted vessel square-rigged only on the forward mast, and apparently formed from the word brig.[Note 1]