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Adjacent Words

Machupo virus
Mack Sennett
Mackenzie Mountains
Mackenzie River
Mackerel bird
Mackerel cock
Mackerel guide
Mackerel gull
Mackerel midge
Mackerel plow
mackerel scad
mackerel shad
mackerel shark
mackerel sky
Mackerel-back sky
Mackinac Bridge

Mackerel definitions

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

MACK'EREL, n. [L. macula, a spot; the spotted fish.]
A species of fish of the genus Scomber, an excellent table fish.
MACK'EREL, n. A pander or pimp.
Mackerel-gale, in Dryden, may mean a gate that ripples the surface of the sea, or one which is suitable for catching mackerel, as this fish is caught with the bait in motion.

WordNet (r) 3.0 (2005)

1: flesh of very important usually small (to 18 in) fatty Atlantic fish
2: any of various fishes of the family Scombridae

Merriam Webster's

noun (plural mackerel or mackerels) Etymology: Middle English makerel, from Anglo-French Date: 14th century 1. a scombroid fish (Scomber scombrus of the family Scombridae) of the North Atlantic that is green above with dark blue bars and silvery below and is a commercially important food fish 2. any of various fishes (as the wahoo and king mackerel) in the same family as the mackerel especially when distinguished from the related bonito or tuna by a comparatively smaller size

Oxford Reference Dictionary

n. (pl. same or mackerels) a N. Atlantic marine fish, Scomber scombrus, with a greenish-blue body, used for food. Phrases and idioms: mackerel shark a porbeagle. mackerel sky a sky dappled with rows of small white fleecy clouds, like the pattern on a mackerel's back. Etymology: ME f. AF makerel, OF maquerel

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Mackerel Mack"er*el, n. [OF. maquerel, F. maquereau, fr. D. makelaar mediator, agent, fr. makelen to act as agent.] A pimp; also, a bawd. [Obs.] --Halliwell.

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Mackerel Mack`er*el, n. [OF. maquerel, F. maquereau (LL. macarellus), prob. for maclereau, fr. L. macula a spot, in allusion to the markings on the fish. See Mail armor.] (Zo["o]l.) Any species of the genus Scomber, and of several related genera. They are finely formed and very active oceanic fishes. Most of them are highly prized for food. Note: The common mackerel (Scomber scombrus), which inhabits both sides of the North Atlantic, is one of the most important food fishes. It is mottled with green and blue. The Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus), of the American coast, is covered with bright yellow circular spots. Bull mackerel, Chub mackerel. (Zo["o]l.) See under Chub. Frigate mackerel. See under Frigate. Horse mackerel . See under Horse. Mackerel bird (Zo["o]l.), the wryneck; -- so called because it arrives in England at the time when mackerel are in season. Mackerel cock (Zo["o]l.), the Manx shearwater; -- so called because it precedes the appearance of the mackerel on the east coast of Ireland. Mackerel guide. (Zo["o]l.) See Garfish (a) . Mackerel gull (Zo["o]l.) any one of several species of gull which feed upon or follow mackerel, as the kittiwake. Mackerel midge (Zo["o]l.), a very small oceanic gadoid fish of the North Atlantic. It is about an inch and a half long and has four barbels on the upper jaw. It is now considered the young of the genus Onos, or Motella. Mackerel plow, an instrument for creasing the sides of lean mackerel to improve their appearance. --Knight. Mackerel shark (Zo["o]l.), the porbeagle. Mackerel sky, or Mackerel-back sky, a sky flecked with small white clouds; a cirro-cumulus. See Cloud. Mackerel sky and mare's-tails Make tall ships carry low sails. --Old Rhyme.

Collin's Cobuild Dictionary

(mackerel) A mackerel is a sea fish with a dark, patterned back. They'd gone out to fish for mackerel. N-VAR Mackerel is this fish eaten as food.

1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue

A bawd: from the French maquerel. Mackerel- backed; long-backed.


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