barnacle

noun
bar·​na·​cle | \ˈbär-ni-kəl \

Definition of barnacle 

2 [ from a popular belief that the goose grew from the crustacean ] : any of numerous marine crustaceans (subclass Cirripedia) with feathery appendages for gathering food that are free-swimming as larvae but permanently fixed (as to rocks, boat hulls, or whales) as adults

Illustration of barnacle

Illustration of barnacle

barnacle 2: 1 peduncle, 2 cirri

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from barnacle

barnacled \ˈbär-​ni-​kəld \ adjective

Examples of barnacle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Nearly all the drug candidates have targeted one of the key hallmarks of Alzheimer’s: amyloid plaques, the barnacle-like proteins long considered the main culprits behind the disease. Linda Marsa, Discover Magazine, "A New Treatment for Alzheimer's? It Starts With Lifestyle," 16 Nov. 2018 Photo: Charles Krebs An acorn barnacle, magnified five times, is seen in a photo taken by Charles Krebs. Daniela Hernandez, WSJ, "From Tears to Spider Embryos: Photos Reveal World’s Microscopic Wonders," 12 Oct. 2018 But the Declaration of Independence invites speculation, accruing apocryphal stories like a ship attracts barnacles. Stephan Salisbury, Philly.com, "Rare version of the Declaration of Independence on display at the Museum of the American Revolution just in time for July 4th," 26 June 2018 While Galicia is famed for its seafoods, the menus focus mainly on octopus, various types of shellfish and their coveted delicacy, barnacles. Doug Hansen, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Hiking Spain's wild coast," 12 July 2018 The scientists have observed 13 different species making use of the one-acre project near Fort Carroll, including barnacles, mussels, mud crabs and grass shrimp. Scott Dance, baltimoresun.com, "Man-made oyster reef near Key Bridge 'flourishing,' Chesapeake Bay Foundation says," 28 June 2018 Their fishing rigs, baited with sea worms and squid and anchored with pyramid sinkers, could not tempt the tautog, who preferred barnacles and crabs. Robert F. Kennedy, Town & Country, "Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. Describes What It's Really Like Inside the Kennedy Compound in Hyannisport," 1 June 2018 Applications include tagging coral reefs for research, cleaning barnacles off of boats, building piers, laying underwater pipes, covert actions that remain classified, and, of course, building the underwater patio of your dreams. Timothy Dahl, Popular Mechanics, "This Drill Handles Saltwater Like a Boss," 12 Jan. 2016 People can vote for one of four options: biscuits, bacon, butternut squash and barnacles. Zoe Szathmary, Fox News, "IHOP says it's changing iconic name; pancake lovers flip out," 6 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'barnacle.' 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 barnacle

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for barnacle

Middle English barnakille, alteration of bernake, bernekke

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about barnacle

Statistics for barnacle

Last Updated

28 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for barnacle

The first known use of barnacle was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for barnacle

barnacle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of barnacle

: a kind of small shellfish that attaches itself to rocks and the bottoms of boats underwater

barnacle

noun
bar·​na·​cle | \ˈbär-ni-kəl \

Kids Definition of barnacle

: a small saltwater crustacean that becomes permanently attached (as to rocks or the bottoms of boats) as an adult

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on barnacle

Spanish Central: Translation of barnacle

Nglish: Translation of barnacle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of barnacle for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about barnacle

Comments on barnacle

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make faulty or ineffective

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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