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[uh-hoi] /əˈhɔɪ/
interjection, Nautical
(used as a call to hail another ship, attract attention, etc.)
Origin of ahoy
1745-55; variant of hoy2. Cf. aha, ahem Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for ahoy
Historical Examples
  • After the piers were ran out they hooked on at the steps p. 60calling aloud, “Woodside, ahoy!”

  • I shall go down to the pier, and call out to my men, ‘ahoy!’

    Trapped by Malays George Manville Fenn
  • Captain Bricker, in charge of the squad, strode to the Snark and called loudly: “ahoy, there!”

    Signal in the Dark Mildred A. Wirt
  • Eben Megg had only just disappeared when the faint, monotonous cry of “ahoy!”

    The Lost Middy George Manville Fenn
  • He told Bill to hail, which was done with a truly sailor-like “ahoy!”

    Radio Boys Loyalty Wayne Whipple
  • The immediate answer to this remark was an “ahoy, there, on board the Viking!”

    The Rival Campers Afloat Ruel Perley Smith
  • This cap was tilted back, and as we ran alongside, a man stuck his head up over the rim and sang out, "ahoy there!"

    Aircraft and Submarines Willis J. Abbot.
  • I threw up a light at once and heard the hail, "Spray, ahoy!"

  • Then the shrill whistles were heard along the line, calling "All hands" to "clear ship for action, ahoy!"

    The Two Admirals J. Fenimore Cooper
  • She went to work to raise the wheel unaided, shouting "ahoy!"

    Magnhild Dust Bjrnstjerne Bjrnson
British Dictionary definitions for ahoy


(nautical) a hail used to call a ship or to attract attention
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 ahoy

1751, from a + hoy, a nautical call used in hauling. The original form of the greeting seems to have been ho, the ship ahoy!

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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