a barbed, spearlike missile attached to a rope, and thrown by hand or shot from a gun, used for killing and capturing whales and large fish.
(initial capital letter) Military. a jet-powered, radar-guided U.S. Navy cruise missile with a high explosive warhead designed for use against surface ships and launchable from a surface vessel, submerged submarine, or aircraft.
verb (used with object)
to strike, catch, or kill with or as if with a harpoon.
(transitive) to spear with or as if with a harpoon
1610s, from French harpon, from Old French harpon “cramp iron, clamp, clasp” (described as a mason’s tool for fastening stones together), from harper “to grapple, grasp,” possibly of Germanic origin, or from Latin harpa- “hook” (cf. harpagonem “grappling hook,” from Greek *harpagon, related to harpe “sickle”). Earlier harping-iron (mid-15c.). Sense and spelling perhaps influenced by Dutch (cf. Middle Dutch harpoen) or Basque, the language of the first whaling peoples, who often accompanied English sailors on their early expeditions. Also see -oon.
1774, from harpoon (n.). Related: Harpooned; harpooning. For agent-noun forms, harpooner is from 1726; harpooneer from 1610s.
noun 1. a small cannon for shooting harpoons.
noun 1. a northern earless seal, Pagophilus groenlandicus, with pale-yellow fur darkening to gray with age, of coasts, drifting ice, and seas of the North Atlantic Ocean, hunted for its fur. noun 1. a brownish-grey earless seal, Pagophilus groenlandicus, of the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans
[hahrp-si-kawrd] /ˈhɑrp sɪˌkɔrd/ noun 1. a keyboard instrument, precursor of the piano, in which the strings are plucked by leather or quill points connected with the keys, in common use from the 16th to the 18th century, and revived in the 20th. /ˈhɑːpsɪˌkɔːd/ noun 1. a horizontally strung stringed keyboard instrument, triangular in shape, consisting […]
[hahr-pee] /ˈhɑr pi/ noun, plural Harpies. 1. Classical Mythology. a ravenous, filthy monster having a woman’s head and a bird’s body. 2. (lowercase) a scolding, nagging, bad-tempered woman; shrew. 3. (lowercase) a greedy, predatory person. /ˈhɑːpɪ/ noun (pl) -pies 1. a cruel grasping woman /ˈhɑːpɪ/ noun (pl) -pies 1. (Greek myth) a ravenous creature with […]