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gill1

[gil] /gɪl/
noun
1.
the respiratory organ of aquatic animals, as fish, that breathe oxygen dissolved in water.
2.
Also called lamella. one of the radiating vertical plates on the underside of the cap of an agaric mushroom.
verb (used with object)
4.
to gut or clean (fish).
Idioms
5.
to catch (fish) by the gills in a gill net.
6.
green / white around the gills, somewhat pale, as from being sickly, nervous, or frightened:
When he heard how much the bill was, he looked a little green around the gills.
7.
to the gills, Informal. fully; completely; totally:
After that big meal we were all stuffed to the gills.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English gile < Scandinavian; compare Old Norse gjǫlnar < *gelnō; cognate with Swed gäl, Danish gælle, Norwegian gjelle gill
Related forms
gill-less, adjective
gill-like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for green around the gills

gill1

/ɡɪl/
noun
1.
the respiratory organ in many aquatic animals, consisting of a membrane or outgrowth well supplied with blood vessels. External gills occur in tadpoles, some molluscs, etc; internal gills, within gill slits, occur in most fishes related adjective branchial
2.
any of the radiating leaflike spore-producing structures on the undersurface of the cap of a mushroom
verb
3.
to catch (fish) or (of fish) to be caught in a gill net
4.
(transitive) to gut (fish)
See also gills
Derived Forms
gilled, adjective
gill-less, adjective
gill-like, adjective
Word Origin
C14: of Scandinavian origin; compare Swedish gäl, Danish gjælle, Greek khelunē lip

gill2

/dʒɪl/
noun
1.
a unit of liquid measure equal to one quarter of a pint
2.
(Northern English, dialect) half a pint, esp of beer
Word Origin
C14: from Old French gille vat, tub, from Late Latin gillō cooling vessel for liquids, of obscure origin

gill3

/ɡɪl/
noun (dialect)
1.
a narrow stream; rivulet
2.
a wooded ravine
3.
(capital when part of place name) a deep natural hole in rock; pothole Gaping Gill
Word Origin
C11: from Old Norse gil steep-sided valley

gill4

/dʒɪl/
noun
1.
(archaic) a girl or sweetheart
2.
(dialect) a female ferret Also spelt jill
3.
an archaic or dialect name for ground ivy
Word Origin
C15: special use of Gill, short for Gillian, girl's name

Gill

/ɡɪl/
noun
1.
(Arthur) Eric (Rowton). 1882–1940, British sculptor, engraver, and typographer: his sculptures include the Stations of the Cross in Westminster Cathedral, London
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 green around the gills
gill
"organ of breathing in fishes," c.1300, from O.N. giolnar "gills;" O.Dan. -gæln (in fiske-gæln "fish gill").
gill
"liquid measure" (commonly a half-pint), 1275, from O.Fr. gille "a wine measure," from M.L. gillo "earthenware jar," of uncertain origin.
Gill
fem. proper name, see Jill.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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green around the gills in Science
gill
  (gĭl)   

  1. The organ that enables most aquatic animals to take dissolved oxygen from the water. It consists of a series of membranes that have many small blood vessels. Oxygen passes into the bloodstream and carbon dioxide passes out of it as water flows across the membranes.

  2. One of the thin strips of tissue on the underside of the cap of many species of basidiomycete fungi. Gills produce the spore-bearing structures known as basidia.


The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for green around the gills

green around the gills

adjective phrase

Sick-looking; pale and miserable; nauseated: He was looking green around the gills, so I told him to lie down

[1930s+; the date should probably be earlier; gills, ''face,'' is found by 1626]


pale around the gills

adjective phrase

Looking sickly or nauseous (1959+)


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Encyclopedia Article for green around the gills

gill

in biology, type of respiratory organ found in many aquatic animals, including a number of worms, nearly all mollusks and crustaceans, some insect larvae, all fishes, and a few amphibians. The gill consists of branched or feathery tissue richly supplied with blood vessels, especially near the gill surface, facilitating the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide with the surrounding water. The gills may be enclosed in cavities, through which the water is often forcibly pumped, or they may project from the body into the water.

Learn more about gill with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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