halibut

[hal-uh-buht, hol-]
noun, plural (especially collectively) halibut (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) halibuts.
1.
either of two large flatfishes, Hippoglossus hippoglossus, of the North Atlantic, or H. stenolepis, of the North Pacific, used for food.
2.
any of various other similar flatfishes.
Also, holibut.


Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English halybutte, equivalent to haly (variant of holy) + butte flat fish (< MD); so called because eaten on holy days. Compare Dutch heilbot, German Heilbutt

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World English Dictionary
halibut or holibut (ˈhælɪbət, ˈhɒlɪbət)
 
n , pl -buts, -but
1.  the largest flatfish: a dark green North Atlantic species, Hippoglossus hippoglossus, that is a very important food fish: family Pleuronectidae
2.  any of several similar and related flatfishes, such as Reinhardtius hippoglossoides (Greenland halibut)
 
[C15: from haliholy (because it was eaten on holy days) + butte flat fish, from Middle Dutch butte]
 
holibut or holibut
 
n
 
[C15: from haliholy (because it was eaten on holy days) + butte flat fish, from Middle Dutch butte]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

halibut
1396, from hali "holy" + butte "flatfish;" supposedly so called from its being eaten on holy days (cf. cognate Du. heilbot, Low Ger. heilbutt, Swed. helgeflundra, Dan. helleflynder). The second element is a general Gmc. name applied to various kinds of flat fishes; cf. O.Swed. but "flatfish," M.E. butt
(c.1300), perhaps ult. from PIE *bhauh- "to strike."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Sol ordered the halibut with buttered peas and julienne potatoes.
Vast stocks of salmon and herring and halibut would perish next, naturalists
  feared, and with them an industry and a way of life.
We ate halibut cheeks that night with some fishermen who brought along a
  fiddle, two guitars, even a clarinet.
We couldn't believe how outrageously yummy these halibut skewers are.
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