Definitions

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

  • n. A spearlike weapon with a barbed head used in hunting whales and large fish.
  • transitive v. To strike, kill, or capture with or as if with a spearlike weapon.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A spearlike weapon with a barbed head used in hunting whales and large fish.
  • n. A harmonica.
  • v. To hunt something with a harpoon.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A spear or javelin used to strike and kill large fish, as whales; a harping iron. It consists of a long shank, with a broad, flat, triangular head, sharpened at both edges, and is thrown by hand, or discharged from a gun.
  • transitive v. To strike, catch, or kill with a harpoon.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A missile weapon used in capturing whales and large fish, and either thrown by hand or fired from a gun. See harpoon-gun.
  • To strike, catch, or kill with a harpoon.

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

  • v. spear with a harpoon
  • n. a spear with a shaft and barbed point for throwing; used for catching large fish or whales; a strong line is attached to it

Etymologies

Probably from Dutch harpoen, from Middle Dutch, from Old French harpon, possibly from harpe, clamp, claw, from Latin harpa, sickle, from Greek harpē.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French harpon, from Latin harpaga, from Ancient Greek ἁρπάγη (harpagē, "hook"), from ἁρπάζω (harpazō, "to snatch away, to carry off, to seize, to captivate"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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