A ‘purse’ seine is a form of fishing net that is paid out around a school of fish, like a cylinder with no top or bottom. When drawn in, the bottom closes, forming a bag from which the fish cannot escape. Figure 1 in this illustration shows the separate parts of the purse seine: A and J, arms of the net; B and I, wings; C, D, K, and L, border of stout twine; F, bailing piece (or bunt); E and G, sides; H, under. Figure 2 shows a diagram of the form a a purse seine spread in the water.
John H. Finley ed. Nelson's Perpetual Loose-Leaf Encyclopaedia (vol. 5) (New York, NY: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1917)