lim·​pet | \ ˈlim-pət How to pronounce limpet (audio) \

Definition of limpet

1 : a marine gastropod mollusk (especially families Acmaeidae and Patellidae) that has a low conical shell broadly open beneath, browses over rocks or timbers in the littoral area, and clings very tightly when disturbed
2 : one that clings tenaciously to someone or something
3 : an explosive device designed to cling magnetically to a metallic surface (such as the hull of a ship)

Illustration of limpet

Illustration of limpet

limpet 1

Examples of limpet in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Also, there have been explosions on oil tankers off the Emirati coast that the US Navy has blamed on Iranian limpet mines. Jon Gambrell,, "Iran abducted California man while in Dubai, family says," 4 Aug. 2020 Also, there have been explosions on oil tankers off the Emirati coast that the U.S. Navy has blamed on Iranian limpet mines. Jon Gambrell, Star Tribune, "Family tells AP: Iran abducted California man while in Dubai," 4 Aug. 2020 Local chef José Pereira combines Azorean ingredients with Japanese techniques: wild line-caught bluefin tuna sashimi and creamy local limpets served with yuzu soy. Trish Lorenz, Condé Nast Traveler, "Portugal's Azores Islands Are Still a Wild Paradise," 7 Feb. 2020 In 2019 limpet mines were attached to merchant ships, an advanced American drone shot down and a co-ordinated missile and drone attack launched against two Saudi oil installations. The Economist, "After the assassination How Iran can respond to the killing of Qassem Suleimani," 9 Jan. 2020 By 110,000 years ago the menu had expanded to include species such as limpets and sand mussels. Curtis W. Marean, Scientific American, "When the Sea Saved Humanity," 1 Nov. 2012 These shellfish, in turn, started crowding out the limpets and algal species. Adam Hadhazy, Discover Magazine, "The Top 10 Science Experiments of All Time," 10 Oct. 2019 For international business, the risks could be clearly seen after crude oil prices jumped nearly 4% after the June limpet mine attacks in the Gulf of Oman. Washington Post, "New US-led patrols in Persian Gulf raise stakes with Iran," 3 Sep. 2019 The United States has accused Iran of two attacks in the vicinity of the Persian Gulf, in which magnetic limpet mines exploded against the hulls of foreign tankers in May and June. Washington Post, "Trump says the U.S. Navy downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz," 18 July 2019

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

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First Known Use of limpet

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

History and Etymology for limpet

Middle English lempet, from Old English lempedu, from Medieval Latin lampreda lamprey

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Time Traveler for limpet

Time Traveler

The first known use of limpet was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

8 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Limpet.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Sep. 2020.

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How to pronounce limpet (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of limpet

: a type of ocean animal that has a shell and that is able to attach itself to things (such as rocks) very tightly

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