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noun (1)

dredg·​er ˈdre-jər How to pronounce dredger (audio)
plural dredgers
: something (such as a barge or a machine) that is used for dredging : dredge entry 2
The groups blame the use of the "Newhaven" scallop dredger, common since the 1970s, for deeper and more damaging fishing practices than ever before.Tony Diver
Why buy expensive sand, sourced from licensed mines, when you can anchor your dredger in some remote estuary, blast the sand out of the riverbed with a water jet and suck it up?Neil Tweedie


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noun (2)

plural dredgers
: a container with a perforated top that is used to coat food (as with flour or sugar) by sprinkling
While still warm, shake over some sugar from a dredger, then cut into squares or fingers.Maxine Gordon

Examples of dredger in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Chinese vessels have been known to encircle various atolls and islets, sending dredgers to build artificial islands large enough to harbor tankers and warships. Kathleen Magramo, CNN, 29 Sep. 2023 China has expanded several islands in the South China Sea, using dredgers and cement machines to not only broaden the size of islets, but build permanent features like seawalls, airfields, and buildings. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 18 Aug. 2023 Dotted along the shoreline are dredgers completing work to add artificial sand, groynes, jetties and breakwaters to prevent further coastal erosion. Time, 3 Aug. 2023 All this was happening in the narrow confines of navigable waterways busy with commercial traffic, as container ships, sand dredgers, tug boats and ferries made their way through the race. William Booth, Washington Post, 24 July 2023 But recently, Beijing laid claim to 90 percent of the 1.3 million square-mile sea, and has used dredgers to expand dozens of islets and shoals, fortifying them with anti-ship and anti-air missiles, and military-grade airfields. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 9 June 2023 Several dredgers, including a specialized suction dredger that can extract 2,000 cubic meters of material per hour, were digging around the vessel's bow, which is wedged into the canal's eastern bank. Vivian Yee New York Times, Star Tribune, 27 Mar. 2021 First came the dredgers, the scientists who dragged giant shovels behind sailing ships and picked through the biological rubble. Amy Brady, Scientific American, 20 June 2023 Chuan Hong 68 was built in 2014, and is described as a grab dredger, or a ship that uses a large claw to remove items from the ocean floor. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 6 June 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dredger.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

Noun (1)

1600, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1666, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of dredger was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near dredger

Cite this Entry

“Dredger.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dredger. Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

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