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anchovy

[an-choh-vee, -chuh-, an-choh-vee]
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noun, plural an·cho·vies.
  1. any small, marine, herringlike fish of the family Engraulidae, especially Engraulis encrasicholus, found in the Mediterranean Sea, often preserved in oil and used in salads, spreads, etc., or packaged in paste form.

Origin of anchovy

1590–1600; < French or Ibero-Romance < Genoese anchua, anchova < Vulgar Latin *apiu(v)a, variant of Latin apua (Pliny) < Greek aphýē fry of various fishes
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for anchovy

anchovy

noun plural -vies or -vy
  1. any of various small marine food fishes of the genus Engraulis and related genera, esp E. encrasicolus of S Europe: family Clupeidae (herrings). They have a salty taste and are often tinned or made into a paste or essence

Word Origin

C16: from Spanish anchoa, perhaps ultimately from Greek aphuē small fish
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for anchovy

n.

1590s, from Portuguese anchova, from Genoese or Corsican dialect, perhaps ultimately from either Latin apua "small fish" (from Greek aphye "small fry") [Gamillscheg, Diez], or from Basque anchu "dried fish," from anchuva "dry" [Klein, citing Mahn].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper