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whale oil

oil rendered from whale blubber, formerly widely used as a fuel for lamps and for making soap and candles.
Origin of whale oil
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for whale-oil
Historical Examples
  • The points of the hooks were fetched up with a file, and the barbs well backened, and the whole dressed over with whale-oil.

    The Maid of Sker Richard Doddridge Blackmore
  • whale-oil was whale-oil then, and whale-oil and New Bedford were synonymous.

  • Spraying with whale-oil soap solution formed by adding one pound of the soap to five gallons of water is the remedy.

    Studies of Trees Jacob Joshua Levison
  • For fire, the Eskimo depends on whale-oil and animal grease.

  • For borers I wash the trees with whale-oil soap, carbolic acid, and sulphur, and then mound the trees up.

    The Apple Various
  • For borers and rabbits wash with whale-oil soap, digging out any borers that may be in with a knife.

    The Apple Various
  • The Grocers seem to have at one time dealt in whale-oil and wool.

    Old and New London Walter Thornbury
  • The soap used may be simply the common washing soap, or that sold at drug stores known as whale-oil soap.

  • I have written to Mr. Carmichael to know on what footing the use and introduction of the whale-oil is there, or can be placed.

  • For lights we were dependent on tallow candles or whale-oil, and soap was mostly home-made.

    A Backward Glance at Eighty Charles A. Murdock
British Dictionary definitions for whale-oil

whale oil

oil obtained either from the blubber of whales (train oil) or the head of the sperm whale (sperm oil)
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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