an·​cho·​vy | \ ˈan-ˌchō-vē How to pronounce anchovy (audio) , an-ˈchō-vē \
plural anchovies or anchovy

Definition of anchovy

: any of a family (Engraulidae) of small fishes resembling herrings that includes several (such as Engraulis encrasicholus) that are important food fishes used especially in appetizers, as a garnish, and for making sauces and relishes

Examples of anchovy in a Sentence

a salad topped with garlic and anchovies
Recent Examples on the Web Lawson devotes one chapter to the unglamorous anchovy. Helen Rosner, The New Yorker, 14 Apr. 2021 An ignominious conclusion for the anchovy lineage; a delicious conclusion for our Caesar salads. CNN, 30 May 2020 In all these recipes, there were so many anchovies. Kerry Elson, The New Yorker, 28 May 2020 Pissaladières are caramelized onion tarts with olives and anchovies. Saveur, 15 May 2020 Current-day anchovies feed on plankton and likely taste different than their mighty forebears, researchers say. Jeff Kerby, National Geographic, 14 May 2020 Add chopped anchovies to the skillet, along with the extra-virgin olive oil. Tina Danze, Dallas News, 6 Apr. 2020 Continue to whip on low and slowly add ¼ cup of anchovy puree until incorporated. Josie Sexton, The Denver Post, 17 Dec. 2019 And yes, the salad has anchovies in it, and yes, a raw egg. Rand Richards Cooper,, 4 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anchovy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of anchovy

1582, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for anchovy

Spanish anchova

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About anchovy

Time Traveler for anchovy

Time Traveler

The first known use of anchovy was in 1582

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near anchovy



anchovy pear

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for anchovy

Cite this Entry

“Anchovy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for anchovy



English Language Learners Definition of anchovy

: a small fish that has a salty flavor

More from Merriam-Webster on anchovy

Nglish: Translation of anchovy for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about anchovy


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!