Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of various long, snakelike, scaleless marine or freshwater fishes of the order Anguilliformes that lack pelvic fins and characteristically migrate from fresh water to salt water to spawn.
  • noun Any of several similar fishes, such as the lamprey and electric eel.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Leptocephalus wilsoni of Australia.
  • noun Congromuræna habenata of New Zealand.
  • noun An elongated apodal fish of the family Anguillidæ and genus Anguilla, of which there are several species.
  • noun Any fish of the order Apodes or Symbranchii, of which there are many families and several hundred species.
  • noun Some fish resembling or likened to an eel; an anguilliform fish.
  • noun Some small nematoid or threadworm, as of the family Anguillulidæ, found in vinegar, sour paste, etc. See vinegar-eel, and cut under Nematoidea.
  • noun Hence— A rope's end; a flogging.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Zoöl.) An elongated fish of many genera and species. The common eels of Europe and America belong to the genus Anguilla. The electrical eel is a species of Gymnotus. The so called vinegar eel is a minute nematode worm. See conger eel, electric eel, and gymnotus.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any fish of the order Anguilliformes which are elongated and resemble snakes. There are freshwater and marine species.
  • noun The European eel, Anguilla anguilla.
  • verb To fish for eels
  • verb To move with a sinuous motion like that of an eel

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun voracious snakelike marine or freshwater fishes with smooth slimy usually scaleless skin and having a continuous vertical fin but no ventral fins
  • noun the fatty flesh of eel; an elongate fish found in fresh water in Europe and America; large eels are usually smoked or pickled

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English ele, from Old English ǣl.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English ele, from Old English ǣl ("eel"), from Proto-Germanic *ēlaz (“eel”). Cognate with West Frisian iel ("eel"), Dutch aal ("eel"), German Aal ("eel"), Swedish and Danish ål ("eel").

Examples

  • The New Zealand longfin eel, is one of the most important creatures in the faith of the New Zealand Maori, and one of the longest-lived and largest freshwater fishes in the world (they can grown seven feet long, and have been aged at 104 years).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • The New Zealand longfin eel, is one of the most important creatures in the faith of the New Zealand Maori, and one of the longest-lived and largest freshwater fishes in the world (they can grown seven feet long, and have been aged at 104 years).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • The New Zealand longfin eel, is one of the most important creatures in the faith of the New Zealand Maori, and one of the longest-lived and largest freshwater fishes in the world (they can grown seven feet long, and have been aged at 104 years).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • The New Zealand longfin eel, is one of the most important creatures in the faith of the New Zealand Maori, and one of the longest-lived and largest freshwater fishes in the world (they can grown seven feet long, and have been aged at 104 years).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • The eel is the only fish in the world that spawns in the middle of an ocean but spends its adult lives in rivers, lakes and streams (the opposite of most migratory fishes, like salmon and shad).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • Did you know that eel is never served raw because the blood carries a neurotoxin (a cubic centimeter of which injected into a rabbit causes instant convulsions and death)?

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • One guy at the check-out of the Supermarket was telling us how eel is considered an “aphrodisiac” in Korea and is good for my husband the way he tried to explain it was hillarious. girlwithhat says:

    24 Hours

  • The eel is the only fish in the world that spawns in the middle of an ocean but spends its adult lives in rivers, lakes and streams (the opposite of most migratory fishes, like salmon and shad).

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • Did you know that eel is never served raw because the blood carries a neurotoxin (a cubic centimeter of which injected into a rabbit causes instant convulsions and death)?

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

  • Did you know that eel is never served raw because the blood carries a neurotoxin (a cubic centimeter of which injected into a rabbit causes instant convulsions and death)?

    James Prosek: 'Eels': The World's Most Mysterious Fish

Comments

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  • "Do you know what that sound is, highness? Those are the shrieking eels! If you don't believe me, just wait. They always grow louder when they're about to feed on human flesh! If you swim back now, I promise no harm will come to you. I doubt you'll get such an offer from the eels."

    February 19, 2007

  • Probably some local fisherman, out for a pleasure cruise, at night... in eel-infested waters...

    February 19, 2007

  • He's right on top of us!!

    February 20, 2007

  • inconceivable!

    February 20, 2007

  • "She doesn't get eaten by the eels at this time."

    "What?"

    "The eel doesn't get her...I'm explaining to you because you looked nervous."

    February 20, 2007

  • I'm not nervous.

    February 20, 2007

  • Because we can stop now if you want.

    February 20, 2007

  • See ostrich fern for additional interesting eel-based conversation.

    October 21, 2007

  • Lee in reverse.

    November 3, 2007

  • She had to pose for life for all the scholars of art

    She didn’t feel funny, she didn’t feel bad

    Peeling away everything she had

    She had the grace of an eel, sleek and stark

    As the shadows played tricks on the girl in the dark.

    (Sukie in the graveyard, by Belle and Sebastian)

    September 5, 2008