Try Our Apps


What is the origin of "February"?

wharf rat

a large brown rat that is commonly found on wharves.
a person who lives or loiters near wharves, often existing by pilfering from ships or warehouses.
Origin of wharf rat
1815-25, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for wharf-rat
Historical Examples
  • But you see, there aint a wharf-rat left in Windover as ud trust me now!

    A Singular Life Elizabeth Stuart Phelps
  • It was strong enough of nicotine to drive a wharf-rat to suicide.

    The Flying Bo'sun Arthur Mason
  • Jack guessed why Gray had tried to irritate him,—he saw that the well-known “wharf-rat” was to be his competitor.

    The Hoosier School-boy Edward Eggleston
British Dictionary definitions for wharf-rat

wharf rat

any rat, usually a brown rat, that infests wharves
(informal) a person who haunts wharves, usually for dishonest purposes
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 wharf rat

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for wharf

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for wharf-rat