What does alewife mean?

Definitions for alewife

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word alewife.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. alewifenoun

    flesh of shad-like fish abundant along the Atlantic coast or in coastal streams

  2. alewife, Alosa pseudoharengus, Pomolobus pseudoharengusnoun

    shad-like food fish that runs rivers to spawn; often salted or smoked; sometimes placed in genus Pomolobus

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Alewifenoun

    A woman that keeps an alehouse.

    Etymology: from ale and wife.

    Perhaps he will swagger and hector, and threaten to beat and butcher an alewife, or take the goods by force, and throw them the bad halfpence. Jonathan Swift, Draper’s Letters.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Alewifenoun

    a woman who keeps an alehouse

  2. Alewifenoun

    a North American fish (Clupea vernalis) of the Herring family. It is called also ellwife, ellwhop, branch herring. The name is locally applied to other related species

  3. Etymology: [This word is properly aloof, the Indian name of a fish. See Winthrop on the culture of maize in America, Phil Trans. No. 142, p. 1065, and Baddam's Memoirs, vol. ii. p. 131.]


  1. Alewife

    The alewife is a species of fish. There are anadromous and landlocked forms. The landlocked form is also called a sawbelly or mooneye. The front of the body is deep and larger than other fish found in the same waters, and its common name is said to come from comparison with a corpulent female tavernkeeper. In Atlantic Canada it is known as the gaspereau. More locally, in southwestern Nova Scotia, it is called a kiack. In the Southeast US, when sold and used as bait, the fish is often referred to as "LY". Adult alewives are preferred bait for the spring lobster fishery in Maine. It is also used for human consumption, usually smoked. It is caught using large dip nets to scoop the fish out of shallow, constricted areas on its migratory streams and rivers. It is one of the "typical" North American shads of the subgenus Pomolobus.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Alewife

    āl′wīf, n. a fish of the same genus as the shad, about a foot in length, common on the east coast of North America. [Said to be a corr. of aloofe, the Indian name of a fish.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. alewife

    The Clupea alosa, a fish of the herring kind, which appears in the Philosophical Transactions for 1678, as the aloofe; the corruption therefore was a ready one.

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How to say alewife in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of alewife in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of alewife in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

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"alewife." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 28 Mar. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/alewife>.

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    a disposition that is confused or nervous and upset
    • A. excogitate
    • B. abet
    • C. fluster
    • D. flub

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