3. The situation of one object, with respect to another, such situation being supposed to have a connection with the object, or influence upon it, or to be influenced by it; hence, relation; connection. But of this frame, the bearings and the ties, The strong connections, nice dependencies. (Pope)
4. Purport; meaning; intended significance; aspect.
9. The situation of a distant object, with regard to a ships position, as on the bow, on the lee quarter, etc.; the direction or point of the compass in which an object is seen; as, the bearing of the cape was W. N. W. Pl. The widest part of a vessel below the plank-sheer.
The line of flotation of a vessel when properly trimmed with cargo or ballast. Ball bearings. See ball. To bring one to his bearings, to bring one to his senses. To lose one's bearings, to become bewildered. To take bearings, to ascertain by the compass the position of an object; to ascertain the relation of one object or place to another; to ascertain one's position by reference to landmarks or to the compass; hence, to ascertain the condition of things when one is in trouble or perplexity.