follow Dictionary.com

What's the "een" in Halloween?

right whale

noun
1.
any of several large whalebone whales of the genus Balaena, of circumpolar seas: the species B. glacialis is greatly reduced in numbers.
Origin
1715-1725
1715-25; allegedly so called because it was the “right” whale to hunt, alluding to its relative buoyancy when killed, proximity to land, the value of its blubber, etc.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for right-whale

right whale

noun
1.
any large whalebone whale of the family Balaenidae. They are grey or black, have a large head, and, in most, no dorsal fin, and are hunted as a source of whalebone and oil See also bowhead
Word Origin
C19: perhaps so named because it was right for hunting
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
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for right whale

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for right

9
9
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with right-whale