Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

shrimp

play
noun \ˈshrimp, especially Southern ˈsrimp\

Simple Definition of shrimp

  • : a small shellfish that has a long body and legs and that is eaten as food

  • : a very small or unimportant person

Full Definition of shrimp

plural shrimps or shrimp

  1. 1 :  any of numerous mostly small and marine decapod crustaceans (suborders Dendrobranchiata and Pleocyemata) having a slender elongated body, a compressed abdomen, and a long spiny rostrum and including some (especially family Penaeidae) that are commercially important as food; also :  a small crustacean (as an amphipod or a branchiopod) resembling the true shrimps

  2. 2 :  a very small or puny person or thing

shrimp·like play \-ˌlīk\ adjective
shrimpy play \ˈshrim-pē, ˈsrim-\ adjective

Examples of shrimp

  1. He's a little shrimp of a boy.

  2. <the boy was just a shrimp until his teens, when he had a growth spurt>



Origin of shrimp

Middle English shrimpe; akin to Middle Low German schrempen to contract, wrinkle, Old Norse skorpna to shrivel up


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Invertebrates (Except Insects) Terms


2

shrimp

intransitive verb

Definition of shrimp

  1. :  to fish for or catch shrimps



1808

First Known Use of shrimp

1808

Other Hunting and Fishing Terms



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

February 5, 2016

bread traditionally eaten on Shabbat

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

pince-nez duvet kittly-benders spindrift
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ