noun (1)
tu·​na | \ ˈtü-nə How to pronounce tuna (audio) , ˈtyü- How to pronounce tuna (audio) \
plural tuna or tunas

Definition of tuna

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : any of numerous large vigorous scombroid food and sport fishes (such as an albacore or a bluefin tuna)
2 : the flesh of a tuna especially when canned for use as food

called also tuna fish


noun (2)
tu·​na | \ ˈtü-nə How to pronounce tuna (audio) \

Definition of tuna (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : any of various flat-jointed prickly pears (genus Opuntia) especially : one (O. tuna) of tropical America
2 : the edible fruit of a tuna

First Known Use of tuna

Noun (1)

1881, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

circa 1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tuna

Noun (1)

American Spanish, alteration of Spanish atún, modification of Arabic tūn, from Latin thunnus, from Greek thynnos

Noun (2)

Spanish, from Taino

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Cite this Entry

“Tuna.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tuna. Accessed 19 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for tuna


tu·​na | \ ˈtü-nə How to pronounce tuna (audio) , ˈtyü- \
plural tuna or tunas

Kids Definition of tuna

: a large sea fish caught for food and sport

More from Merriam-Webster on tuna

Nglish: Translation of tuna for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about tuna

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