27:17 used supports. Because of the danger of violent storms on the Mediterranean, ancient vessels carried ropes to strengthen the hull by being tied around it sideways in an emergency.
lowered the gear. Fearing that they might be driven all the way to the Syrtis (a region of sands near modern Libya and Tunisia) the sailors lowered the sail. The description in Greek could also mean that they lowered a sea anchor to slow the ship down.