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Starboard is a combination of steer, and bord (side). The steering paddle used to be on the right side perhaps because most people are right handed.
It originates from the Vikings. Nowadays in Norwegian we say "styrbord", and "bord" still has the meaning "side of a ship".
This meaning exists in English, as in "to fall overboard" and "outboard" motor. The etymology is shared by "border" in the sense of "edge".
The Vikings also spread the word for the left side of the ship "babord", which is the precise term still used both in Norwegian and French, even though the Viking occupation of Normandy ended some 1000 years ago. In English, "labord" was used until it was replaced by "port".
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