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

  • n. A small marine food fish (Clupea sprattus) of northeast Atlantic waters that is eaten fresh or smoked and is often canned in oil as a sardine. Also called brisling.
  • n. Any of various other similar fishes, such as a young herring.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of various small, herring-like, marine fish in the family Clupeidae.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A small European herring (Clupea sprattus) closely allied to the common herring and the pilchard; -- called also garvie. The name is also applied to small herring of different kinds.
  • n. A California surf-fish (Rhacochilus toxotes); -- called also alfione, and perch.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To fish for sprats.
  • n. A name of various species of rushes, as Juncus articulatus, etc.
  • n. plural Small wood.
  • n. A small clupeoid fish of European waters, Clupea (Harengula) sprattus.
  • n. A name of other fishes
  • n. A small coin.
  • n. Same as thread-herring.

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

  • n. small fatty European fish; usually smoked or canned like sardines
  • n. small herring processed like a sardine


Middle English sprot, spratte, from Old English sprot.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)



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