packet-boat

packet

[pak-it]
noun
1.
a small group or package of anything: a packet of letters.
2.
Also called packet boat, packet ship. a small vessel that carries mail, passengers, and goods regularly on a fixed route, especially on rivers or along coasts.
3.
Cards. a part of a pack of cards after being cut.
4.
Informal. a large amount of money.
5.
British Slang.
a.
a painful blow or beating.
b.
misfortune or failure.
verb (used with object)
6.
to bind up in a package or parcel.

Origin:
1520–30; < Middle French pacquet, equivalent to pacqu(er) to pack1 + -et -et


1. See package.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
packet (ˈpækɪt)
 
n
1.  package, Usual US and Canadian word: pack a small or medium-sized container of cardboard, paper, etc, often together with its contents: a packet of biscuits
2.  a small package; parcel
3.  Also called: packet boat a boat that transports mail, passengers, goods, etc, on a fixed short route
4.  slang a large sum of money: to cost a packet
5.  computing See also packet switching a unit into which a larger piece of data is broken down for more efficient transmission
 
vb
6.  (tr) to wrap up in a packet or as a packet
 
[C16: from Old French pacquet, from pacquer to pack, from Old Dutch pak a pack]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

packet
1530, from M.E. pak "bundle" (see pack (n.)) + dim. suffix -et; perhaps modified on Anglo-Fr. pacquet (M.Fr. pacquet), which is ult. a dim. of M.Du. pak. A packet boat (1641) was originally one that carried mails.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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