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[gan-it] /ˈgæn ɪt/
any large, web-footed, seabird of the family Sulidae, having a sharply pointed bill, long wings, and a wedge-shaped tail, noted for its plunging dives for fish.
Origin of gannet
before 900; Middle English; Old English ganot; akin to Dutch gent gander Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for gannet
Historical Examples
  • And in the gannet, which drops into the sea from a great height after fish, these air-bags lessen the shock on striking the water.

    Love's Meinie John Ruskin
  • The gannet took two or three more prizes, and sent them into Jamaica.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • But how will the gannet get on without her boatswain, Mr Pringle?

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • It was evident that the gannet herself could do nothing to assist her prize.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • I drew all day at an adult gannet which we brought from the great rock of which I have spoken; it was still in good order.

  • The earl was conducted to a sitting-room, where Dr. gannet left him for a while.

  • On the coast itself; there were the usual sea-birds—the gannet and the sea-gull—and fish in abundance.

  • Like the Albatross, the gannet may almost be said to live in the air.

    British Sea Birds Charles Dixon
  • It is a great breeding ground for gannet, with which, during the breeding season, its sides are white as the waves below.

    The Sunny Side of Ireland John O'Mahony and R. Lloyd Praeger
  • Their nests were similar to those of the gannet above mentioned.

    Cruise of the 'Alert' R. W. Coppinger
British Dictionary definitions for gannet


any of several heavily built marine birds of the genus Morus (or Sula), having a long stout bill and typically white plumage with dark markings: family Sulidae, order Pelecaniformes (pelicans, cormorants, etc) See also booby (sense 3)
(slang) a gluttonous or greedy person
Word Origin
Old English ganot; related to Old High German gannazzo gander
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 gannet

Old English ganot "gannet, sea-bird, water fowl," from Proto-Germanic *ganito (cf. Dutch gent, Middle High German ganiz, Old High German ganazzo), from PIE *ghans- (see goose). Old French gante is from Germanic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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