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whitecap

[hwahyt-kap, wahyt-] /ˈʰwaɪtˌkæp, ˈwaɪt-/
noun
1.
a wave with a broken and foaming white crest.
Origin
1660-1670
1660-70; white + cap1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for white caps

whitecap

/ˈwaɪtˌkæp/
noun
1.
a wave with a white broken crest
2.
(US) a member of a vigilante organization that attempts to control a community
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for white caps

whitecap

n.

1660s, of birds, from white + cap (n.). Attested from 1773 in reference to breaking waves, from 1818 of mushrooms, and from 1891 in reference to "one of a self-constituted band in U.S. who committed outrages under pretense of regulating public morals" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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