fish·​er ˈfi-shər How to pronounce fisher (audio)
plural fishers
: someone or something that fishes
Whether buying at a restaurant, grocery store or directly from the fisher, asking for wild Alaska salmon means supporting the men and women who pulled a wild fish from the sea …Berett Wilber
All around us, fishers galumphed past in everything from chest-high rubber waders to blue jeans and baseball caps.Stephen C. Sautner
Commercial fishers rarely catch the type of fish they seek without catching other, non-targeted fish.Greenpeace
Great blue herons are waders. … Their patience and ability to stand absolutely still for long periods of time make them excellent fishers.Brian C. Salt
or less commonly fisher cat plural fisher cats : a dark brown North American carnivorous mammal (Pekania pennanti synonym Martes pennanti) of the weasel family that has a pointy snout, small rounded ears, and a bushy tail
A carnivorous and curious fellow, the fisher was once a thriving dweller in old-growth West Coast forests …Maria Beloborodova
He said the nocturnal fisher, often called the fisher cat because of its tom cat snarl that can raise the hackles on the back of your neck, was in his yard during the day.Frank Sousa
: the fur or pelt of this animal
A full-length fisher coat can retail for $7,000.Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, Massachusetts)

Examples of fisher in a Sentence

few fishers of lake trout are more ardent or adept than my father
Recent Examples on the Web Next, the fishers tried putting the bait inside a smaller plastic container with a lid. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 20 Nov. 2023 And there’s pride in getting all those old tires, trash cans and e-scooter batteries out of the water (the scooter companies hate the magnet fishers — they get fined by the city for every scooter the fishers recover). Petula Dvorak, Washington Post, 6 Nov. 2023 That, of course, could impact fisheries, threatening the livelihood of subsistence fishers. WIRED, 2 Aug. 2023 When crab fishers operate in the same area, the whales can get caught in their equipment, especially in fishing lines that run from crab pots on the seafloor to buoys on the water’s surface. Tori Latham, Robb Report, 31 Oct. 2023 The legal addition in 2011 of hand fishing in Texas does not appear to have recruited many new people to cat-fishing, and hand fishers were likely represented in previous statewide angler surveys as well as a 2010 statewide catfish survey. Natalie Krebs, Outdoor Life, 15 Nov. 2023 Just five years ago, fishers would have been lucky to get that many fish in one week. Tiare Tuuhia, Smithsonian Magazine, 10 Nov. 2023 Grazer raised two litters and is one of the best salmon fishers on the river, the park's website says. Natalie Kainz, NBC News, 13 Oct. 2023 For all the young fishers in Bristol Bay there is anger and frustration and hurt but also laughter and reminiscing. Jack Darrell, Anchorage Daily News, 4 Aug. 2023 See More

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

Word History


Middle English fischer, fischare, going back to Old English fiscere, from fisc fish entry 1 + -ere -er entry 2; (sense 2) perhaps by folk etymology from fitchew

Note: The derivative was perhaps already formed in West Germanic—compare Old Frisian fisker, fiskere, Old Saxon & Old High German fiskari, Middle Dutch visscher.

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of fisher was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near fisher

Cite this Entry

“Fisher.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


fish·​er ˈfish-ər How to pronounce fisher (audio)
: one that fishes
: a dark brown North American flesh-eating mammal related to the weasels
also : its valuable fur or pelt

Biographical Definition

Fisher 1 of 4

biographical name (1)

Fish·​er ˈfi-shər How to pronounce Fisher (audio)
Dorothy 1879–1958 Dorothea Frances née Canfield ˈkan-ˌfēld How to pronounce Fisher (audio) American novelist


2 of 4

biographical name (2)

Irving 1867–1947 American economist


3 of 4

biographical name (3)

John Arbuthnot 1841–1920 1st Baron Fisher of Kilverstone ˈkil-vər-stən How to pronounce Fisher (audio) British admiral


4 of 4

biographical name (4)

Mary Frances Kennedy 1908–1992 American writer

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