The oysterman’s stopper is considerably bulkier than the much more common figure eight and double overhand stoppers. It is secure unlike the figure eight, and less prone to jam under heavy load than the double overhand. The Oysterman’s stopper has an interesting history. Legendary knot expert Clifford Ashley developed it in trying to duplicate a knot he saw from a distance, on an oyster fishing boat. Having not encountered the knot previously, Ashley assumed it was uniquely used by oystermen. When he had a chance to observe the knot up close at a later time he realized it was just a badly water-swollen figure eight stopper knot. He invented an entirely new knot – by mistake.