ship·​load ˈship-ˈlōd How to pronounce shipload (audio)
: as much or as many as will fill or load a ship
: an indefinitely large amount or number

Examples of shipload in a Sentence

Shiploads of settlers came to the New World. it must have taken a shipload of money to build that mansion
Recent Examples on the Web Charles Edward Trevelyan, a top treasury official, curtailed the government’s subsidized food distribution program, even at one point rejecting a shipload of corn. Richard Grant, Smithsonian Magazine, 7 Sep. 2023 Advertisement Jump to 2019, when a shipload of archaeologists, ice experts, engineers and masters of several other disciplines set out to find the Endurance. Dennis Drabelle, Washington Post, 3 Mar. 2023 The intimidating sight of a shipload of pirates bearing down on a smaller, outnumbered crew must have been terrifying. National Geographic, 2 July 2020 What's certain is that the chairman, then 49, escaped in one of the last lifeboats, leaving behind a shipload of passengers, his butler, his secretary and his reputation. People Staff,, 15 Apr. 2022 The choice of October 9 as the official holiday had nothing to with the son of Erik the Red himself and everything to do with October 9 being the date when the first shipload of Norwegian immigrants arrived in the United States in 1825. Arthur Herman, National Review, 9 Oct. 2021 Today’s holiday gifts — from princess palaces to water guns — entered the country by the shipload without the usual security checks from mid-March to September, including months that were inspectors’ busiest last year, USA TODAY found. Brett Murphy, USA TODAY, 22 Dec. 2020 The federal safety inspectors who protect kids from dangerous and deadly toys were not standing guard for nearly six months while this year’s holiday gifts entered the U.S. by the shipload. Brett Murphy, USA TODAY, 11 Dec. 2020 The recycling industry has been reeling after China and other overseas markets, which used to buy America’s plastic trash by the shipload, halted shipments in recent years. Dustin Gardiner,, 12 Sep. 2020

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

Word History

First Known Use

1639, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of shipload was in 1639

Dictionary Entries Near shipload

Cite this Entry

“Shipload.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


ship·​load -ˈlōd How to pronounce shipload (audio)
: as much or as many as a ship will hold
a shipload of corn
shiploads of immigrants
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