noun \ˈāl-ˌwīf\

Definition of ALEWIFE

:  a woman who keeps an alehouse

First Known Use of ALEWIFE

15th century


plural ale·wives\-ˌwīvz\

Definition of ALEWIFE

:  a food fish (Alosa pseudoharengus) of the herring family that is very abundant along the Atlantic coast; also :  any of several related fishes (as the menhaden)

Origin of ALEWIFE

perhaps alteration of obsolete allowes, a kind of shad, from French alose shad, from Old French, from Late Latin alausa
First Known Use: 1633


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Important North American food fish (Pomolobus, or Alosa, pseudoharengus) of the herring family. The alewife grows to about 1 ft (30 cm). Most populations spend several years along North America's Atlantic coast before ascending freshwater streams to spawn each spring in ponds or sluggish rivers.


Next Word in the Dictionary: alexander
Previous Word in the Dictionary: alevin
All Words Near: alewife

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up alewife? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More