shanghai

verb
shang·​hai | \ ˈshaŋ-ˌhī How to pronounce shanghai (audio) , shaŋ-ˈhī How to pronounce shanghai (audio) \
shanghaied; shanghaiing

Definition of shanghai

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to put aboard a ship by force often with the help of liquor or a drug
b : to put by force or threat of force into or as if into a place of detention
2 : to put by trickery into an undesirable position

Shanghai

geographical name
Shang·​hai | \ shaŋ-ˈhī How to pronounce Shanghai (audio) \

Definition of Shanghai (Entry 2 of 2)

city and port on the Huangpu River near the estuary of the Chang (Yangtze) River in eastern China population 21,126,600

Note: Shanghai is China's most populous city.

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Other Words from shanghai

Verb

shanghaier \ shaŋ-​ˈhī(-​ə)r How to pronounce shanghaier (audio) , ˈshaŋ-​ˌhī-​ \ noun

Did You Know?

In the 1800s, long sea voyages were very difficult and dangerous, so people were understandably hesitant to become sailors. But sea captains and shipping companies needed crews to sail their ships, so they gathered sailors any way they could - even if that meant resorting to kidnapping by physical force or with the help of liquor or drugs. The word shanghai comes from the name of the Chinese city of Shanghai. People started to use the city's name for that unscrupulous way of obtaining sailors because the East was often a destination of ships that had kidnapped men onboard as crew.

First Known Use of shanghai

Verb

1871, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for shanghai

Verb

Shanghai, China; from the former use of this method to secure sailors for voyages to eastern Asia

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Dictionary Entries near shanghai

Shang

Shangalla

shangan

shanghai

Shanghai

Shanghailander

shango

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Time Traveler for shanghai

The first known use of shanghai was in 1871

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More Definitions for shanghai

shanghai

verb

English Language Learners Definition of shanghai

somewhat old-fashioned
: to bring (someone) onto a ship by force
informal : to make (someone) do something by using force or tricks

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More from Merriam-Webster on shanghai

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shanghai

Nglish: Translation of shanghai for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shanghai for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about shanghai

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