Definition of herring
1 : either of two food fishes (genus Clupeus):a : one (C. harengus) that is abundant in the temperate and colder parts of the North Atlantic and that in the adult state is preserved by smoking or salting and in the young state is extensively canned and sold as sardinesb : one (C. pallasi synonym C. h. pallasi) of the North Pacific harvested especially for its roe
2 : any of a large family (Clupeidae) of soft-finned bony fishes (such as the herrings, shads, sardines, and menhadens) that have a laterally compressed body and a forked tail and usually occur in schools
Recent Examples of herring from the Web
Critics of McConnell's health care plan said this is a bit of a red herring on Cassidy's part.
Nonetheless, the 30-year-old actor took some time out of his Monday night appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! to try and convince fans that the season seven spoilers that popped up on the internet over the past year could be red herrings.
But for ordinary Britons who, since the referendum, have endured a squeeze on incomes comparable to that during the financial crisis of 2008, the fishing industry is a red herring.
In the 1980s, Togiak herring was worth up to $950 a ton.
Some researchers say the focus on mutations could be a red herring.
Some moments that seemed important also turned out to be red herrings, or unresolved plot points.
Either way, the president is a liar and is horrible at red herrings and sucks at life.
Midsommar Food and Dance PLAN AHEAD Traditional smorgasbord of Swedish midsommar food with five kinds of herring, 6 p.m., dance around the midsommar pole, 7:30 p.m. June 23, Swedish Club, 1920 Dexter Ave.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'herring.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of herring
Middle English hering, from Old English hǣring; akin to Old High German hārinc herring
First Known Use: before 12th centurySee Words from the same year
HERRING Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of herring for English Language Learners
: a fish that lives in the northern Atlantic Ocean and is often eaten as food
HERRING Defined for Kids
Definition of herring for Students
: a fish of the northern Atlantic Ocean that is often used for food
Seen and Heard
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