Definitions

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

  • noun Any of several marine food fishes chiefly of the genus Alosa, especially A. sapidissima of northern North American waters, which swims up rivers to spawn. Shad are closely related to herring.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A Middle English past participle of shed.
  • noun A clupeoid fish of the genus Alosa, in which there are no palatal teeth and the cheeks are deeper than they are long.
  • noun In the Ohio valley, a clupeoid, Pomolobus chrysochloris, with persistent and well-developed teeth in the premaxillaries and front of the lower jaw.
  • noun With a qualifying word, one of several other fishes. See gizzard-shad, and phrases below.

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

  • noun (Zoöl.) Any one of several species of food fishes of the Herring family. The American species (Alosa sapidissima formerly Clupea sapidissima), which is abundant on the Atlantic coast and ascends the larger rivers in spring to spawn, is an important market fish. The European allice shad, or alose (Alosa alosa formerly Clupea alosa), and the twaite shad (Alosa finta formerly Clupea finta), are less important species.
  • noun the menhaden.
  • noun the mattowacca.
  • noun one of several species of important food fishes of the Bermudas and the West Indies, of the genus Gerres.
  • noun (Bot.) a name given to the North American shrubs or small trees of the rosaceous genus Amelanchier (A. Canadensis, and A. alnifolia) Their white racemose blossoms open in April or May, when the shad appear, and the edible berries (pomes) ripen in June or July, whence they are called Juneberries. The plant is also called service tree, and Juneberry.
  • noun an American spotted frog (Rana halecina); -- so called because it usually appears at the time when the shad begin to run in the rivers.
  • noun the squeteague.
  • noun the common shad.

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

  • noun Any one of several species of food fishes that comprise the genus Alosa in the family Clupeidae, to which the herrings also belong; river herring.

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

  • noun herring-like food fishes that migrate from the sea to fresh water to spawn
  • noun bony flesh of herring-like fish usually caught during their migration to fresh water for spawning; especially of Atlantic coast

Etymologies

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

[Middle English *schad, from Old English sceadd.]

Examples

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