sea·​man | \ ˈsē-mən How to pronounce seaman (audio) \

Definition of seaman

2a : any of the three ranks below petty officer in the navy or coast guard
b : an enlisted man in the navy or coast guard ranking above a seaman apprentice and below a petty officer

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Examples of seaman in a Sentence

a weathered old seaman who now captains a tour boat

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2000, the Kursk submarine sank during naval maneuvers in the Barents Sea, killing all 118 seamen onboard in Russia's worst submarine disaster. Fox News, "Scientists discover radiation leak '100,000 times normal level' from Russian nuclear sub wreck," 12 July 2019 According to military records, D'Amelio was originally from California and a seaman second class who served in the U.S. Navy during World War II. Fox News, "Purple Heart medal discovered at Goodwill in Arizona, prompting search for family," 10 July 2019 According to military records, D'Amelio was a seaman second class in the US Navy who was declared missing in action when the USS Little sank in the Solomon Islands on September 5, 1942. Amanda Jackson, CNN, "A Purple Heart that was mistakenly donated to Goodwill will be returned to a sailor's family," 10 July 2019 The business daily Kommersant reported that most of the seamen were resting and a team of five was on duty when the fire erupted. Time, "A Nuclear Reactor on Fire-Damaged Submarine Remains Safe and 'Operational,' Russian Authorities Say," 4 July 2019 The captain, a 26-year-old Norwegian, went to sleep about 1 a.m., leaving a novice seaman at the helm. Bonnie Gross,, "Boat tours explore underwater Biscayne National Park," 20 June 2019 The seamen were treated to a day of catch-and-release sturgeon fishing., "Monroe: Sailors hit Willamette River to battle sturgeon with Fleet Week in full swing," 8 June 2019 On behalf of all Britons, and especially those seamen who gave their lives for each other and their country. Washington Post, "Looking for a ride to Omaha; British veteran remembers WWII," 6 June 2019 Don’t miss the cemetery, either, where the carvings atop each tombstone indicate that person’s station in life (a fez headdress was reserved for government officials, a turban for someone of the religious order, an anchor for a seaman, and so on). Ashlea Halpern, Condé Nast Traveler, "Three Days In Istanbul," 28 Dec. 2018

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

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

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Statistics for seaman

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for seaman

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

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English Language Learners Definition of seaman

: an experienced sailor
: a sailor in the U.S. or British Navy or the U.S. Coast Guard who is not an officer


sea·​man | \ ˈsē-mən How to pronounce seaman (audio) \
plural seamen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of seaman

1 : a person who helps in the handling of a ship at sea : sailor
2 : an enlisted person in the navy or coast guard ranking above a seaman apprentice

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More from Merriam-Webster on seaman

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with seaman

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for seaman

Spanish Central: Translation of seaman

Nglish: Translation of seaman for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of seaman for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about seaman

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of or relating to the heavens

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