gill

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English[edit]

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Wikipedia Wikipedia

An Alpine newt larva showing the gills, which flare just behind the head.
Mushroom gills.

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English gile (gill), from Old Norse giolnar (lips), from Proto-Indo-European *ghel-una- (jaw), related to Ancient Greek χεῖλος (kheîlos, lip).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

gill (plural gills)

  1. (animal anatomy) A breathing organ of fish and other aquatic animals.
    • Ray
      Fishes perform respiration under water by the gills.
  2. (of a fish) A gill slit or gill cover.
    Gill nets are designed to catch a fish by the gills.
  3. (mycology) One of the radial folds on the underside of the cap of a mushroom, on the surface of which the spore-producing organs are borne.
  4. (animal anatomy) The fleshy flap that hangs below the beak of a fowl; a wattle.
  5. (figuratively) The flesh under or about the chin; a wattle.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Jonathan Swift to this entry?)
  6. (spinning) One of the combs of closely ranged steel pins which divide the ribbons of flax fiber or wool into fewer parallel filaments.
Synonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
See also[edit]

Verb[edit]

gill (third-person singular simple present gills, present participle gilling, simple past and past participle gilled)

  1. To remove the gills from a fish as part of gutting and cleaning it.
    • 2014, Scott Tippett, Polaris (ISBN 1304268179), page 99:
      She gutted and gilled the fish, then scaled it.
  2. (transitive) To catch (a fish) in a gillnet.
    • 1898, Report of the Commissioner of Fisheries to the Secretary of Commerce and Labor, page 255:
      Owing to the peculiar shape of the pompano and the relatively large mesh in the pompano gill nets, the fish are not caught by being actually gilled.
    • 1971, Michael Culley, ‎G. A. Kerkut, The Pilchard: Biology and Exploitation (ISBN 1483186784), page 70:
      In cases of very heavy catches the nets may be hauled and stored with the fish still gilled. The fish would then be shaken out on return to the port.
    • 1994, G.D. Pickett, ‎M.G. Pawson, Sea Bass: Biology (ISBN 0412400901), page 177:
      The intention is to gill the fish, so they are usually scared into the net by rowing one boat into the middle of the net circle and banging the oars on the boat bottom or splashing the water.
  3. (intransitive) To be or become entangled in a gillnet.
    • 2010, Edward A. Perrine, Midnight Tracy (ISBN 0557472334), page 147:
      Also, when fish gilled there wasn't as much extra twine to tangle in, so they were easier to release from the net.
Quotations[edit]
  • 1948, Oliver Hazard Perry Rodman, The Saltwater Fisherman's Favorite Four, page 166:
    As we had fish home in the icebox, when Bill led the fish up alongside, I leaned over the combing, gilled the fish with my fingers, slid out the hook and let go. The bass lay there for a moment, tired from the arch of the rod and the pull of the line.
References[edit]
  • Walter Koelz, Fishing industry of the Great Lakes (1926), page 556: Since the fine threads of the net usually are caught under the gill covers of the fish they are said to be "gilled."

Etymology 2[edit]

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Wikipedia

From Old French gille (a wine measure), from Medieval Latin gillo (earthenware jar), possibly from Gaulish gallā (vessel).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

gill (plural gills)

  1. A drink measure for spirits and wine. Size varies regionally but it is about one quarter of a pint.
  2. (archaic, UK) A measuring jug holding a quarter or half a pint.

Etymology 3[edit]

From Middle English gille, from Old Norse gil

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

gill (plural gills)

  1. (UK) rivulet
  2. (UK) ravine

Etymology 4[edit]

Etymology uncertain.

Noun[edit]

gill (plural gills)

  1. A two-wheeled frame for transporting timber.

Etymology 5[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

  • gill

Noun[edit]

gill (plural gills)

  1. (Scotland) A leech.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Jamieson to this entry?)

Irish[edit]

Noun[edit]

gill m

  1. genitive singular of geall

Mutation[edit]

Irish mutation
Radical Lenition Eclipsis
gill ghill ngill
Note: Some of these forms may be hypothetical. Not every
possible mutated form of every word actually occurs.

Scottish Gaelic[edit]

Noun[edit]

gill m

  1. genitive singular of geall
  2. plural form of geall