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Most often thought to be from Narragansett poquaûhock (hard clam), perhaps from pohkeni (dark) +‎ hogki (shell). Alternatively from Mohegan-Pequot p'quaghhaug (hard clam) or another Algonquian language.



quahog (plural quahogs)

  1. An edible clam with a hard shell found along the Atlantic Coast of North America, from species Mercenaria mercenaria, formerly Venus mercenaria.
    1. The largest size of such an edible clam, generally considered only fit for use in chowders and other clam dishes.
  2. A similar edible clam found along coasts around the North Atlantic, generally in deeper waters, the ocean quahog, black quahog, mahogany clam or Icelandic cyprine, Arctica islandica

Alternative forms[edit]

  • quahaug (slightly more common until the 1950s, now uncommon)
  • quohog (regional US; uncommon nationally)
  • cohog (regional US; uncommon nationally)



quahog (third-person singular simple present quahogs, present participle quahogging, simple past and past participle quahogged)

  1. (intransitive) To dig for quahogs.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 quahog” in Dictionary.com Unabridged, Dictionary.com, LLC, 1995–present.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 quahog” in the Collins English Dictionary, Glasgow: HarperCollins Publishers.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 quahog” in Michael Agnes, editor-in-chief, Webster's New World College Dictionary, 4th edition, Cleveland, Oh.: Wiley, 2010, →ISBN; reproduced on the Collins English Dictionary, Glasgow: HarperCollins Publishers.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 quahog” in Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
  5. 5.0 5.1 Linguistic Atlas of New England (1939)
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1914: "quahog"

Further reading[edit]

  • quahog at OneLook Dictionary Search