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See also: Haye and hayeʼ


Etymology 1[edit]

From Dutch haai (shark) or West Flemish haaie (formerly haeye), from the Old Norse hái, a short form of hákarl (shark) (a compound of hár, "high, great" + karl, "man"). The German Hai and the Swedish haj are from the same source.

Alternative forms[edit]



haye (plural hayes)

  1. A shark (scaleless cartilaginous fish).
    • 1613, Samuel Purchas, Pilgrimage, page 504:
      They have of Hayens or Tuberons which devour men, especially such as fish for Pearles.
    • 1665, Sir Thomas Herbert, A Relation of Some Yeares Travaile Begunne Anno 1626, into Afrique and the Greater Asia, page 6:
      Other unlucky accidents oft-times happen in these seas, as, when (especially in becalmings) men swim in the bearing ocean, the greedy Hayen, called Tuberon or Shark, armed with a double row of venomous teeth, pursue them, directed by a little rhombus or musculus, variously streaked and coloured with blue and white, that scuds to and fro to bring the shark intelligence.
    • 1694, Account of Several Late Voyages and Discoveries, book 2, page 139:
      They do not fling away the Hays in Spain, but sell them.
    • 1705, an English translation of Letter XV of William Bosman’s 1704 Dutch Nauwkeurige Beschryving vande Guinese Gould- Tand- en Slave-kust (New and Accurate Description of the Coast of Guinea), published in A general collection of the best and most interesting voyages, by John Pinkerton, in 1814; volume 16, pages 451:
      The Haye doth not spawn like other fishes, nor lay eggs (as the tortoise does), but casts its young in the manner of quadrupeds. [¶]These fish do no manner of damage on the whole Gold Coast; but as Fida and Ardra, where the slave-trade is managed, they are extraordinarily ravenous, and in my opinion fiercer than the most voracious animal in the world. []
      [¶]When the Haye seizes his Prey, he is obliged to turn himself on his Back, because his mouth is placed far behind and low, wherefore he cannot come at any thing upwards. [¶]When we sometimes take one of these fish and haul him on board with a rope, we are always obliged to keep a distance; for besides his sharp teeth, he strikes with his tail, which is prodigiously strong, and whoever comes near him loses either an arm or a leg, or at least hath it broken to pieces.
    • 1731, P. Kolben [aut.] and Guido Medley [tr.], Present State of the Cape of Good Hope, volume 2, page 193:
      There are in the Cape sea two sorts of Sharks. The Cape-Europeans call ‛em Hayes.
    • 1799, William Tooke, View of the Russian Empire During the Reign of Catherine II, volume 3, page 105:
      The Frozen Ocean, likewise, teems with the NARHWAL, the POTT-FISH, from whose brain spermaceti is prepared, the SEA-DOG, DOLPHIN, SEA-HOG, HAY-FISH, sea-cow, the sea-bear, the sealion []
    • 1867, Admiral William Henry Smyth, The Sailor’s Word-book: An Alphabetical Digest of Nautical Terms, Haye:
      Haye, a peculiar ground-shark on the coast of Guinea.
Usage notes[edit]
  • Haye may denote a sense narrower than merely “shark” in many uses, but the term has been applied to sharks in waters from the Arctic Circle to the Cape of Good Hope, rendering it unlikely that any more specific consistent usage can be inferred.


Etymology 2[edit]

See hay.


haye (plural hayes)

  1. Obsolete spelling of hay (grass cut and dried for use as animal fodder).
    • 1612—1640, Husbandry and Heardes, in the Household Books of the Lord William Howard, of Nanwoth Castle (published in 1878), page 324:
      14. In marg.—"Jo. Turner." For mowinge and wininge* the haye in Barkholme, xxxj8. For mowinge and wininge the haye in Brampton parke, xxxiij8. vjd.
    • 1806, Edmund Burke, Dodsley's annual register:
      Iem, that hee take order with them for husbandlie usage of the haye, and apportionate the provender to be allowed to everye man's charge, according to the number of horses that are in house []
    • 1836, Samuel Astley Dunham, Lives of the most eminent literary and scientific men of Great Britain, Volume 1:
      [] and he toke the horse and the haye, and lept upon the horse and rode to the gentlemannys place []


Middle French[edit]


haye f (plural hayes)

  1. hedge





  1. all right