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[kok-uh l-shel] /ˈkɒk əlˌʃɛl/
a shell of the cockle.
a shell of some other mollusk, as the scallop.
Nautical. any light or frail vessel.
Origin of cockleshell
late Middle English
First recorded in 1375-1425, cockleshell is from the late Middle English word cokille shell. See cockle1, shell Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for cockleshell
Historical Examples
  • But you don't tell me you have come over from Saaron in that cockleshell of yours?

    Major Vigoureux A. T. Quiller-Couch
  • For two days the sea had been running high and we were tossed about like a cockleshell.

    Australia in Arms Phillip F.E. Schuler
  • Now, one rush and they are gone back to their own cockleshell.

    Roger the Bold F. S. Brereton
  • That red capsicum is the foot of the animal contained in the cockleshell.

    Glaucus Charles Kingsley
  • If his own cockleshell went down there could be no succour for her.

    The Moon Rock

    Arthur J. Rees
  • The wind rose to a regular gale and the wagon rocked like a cockleshell on a choppy sea.

    Girl Scouts in the Rockies Lillian Elizabeth Roy
  • And in the morning there was a cockleshell of a boat oared in by one of the men who had found it downriver.

    Ride Proud, Rebel! Andre Alice Norton
  • Carter stood up in the stern sheets balancing himself cleverly to the disordered motion of his cockleshell.

    The Rescue Joseph Conrad
  • But that cockleshell he stamped his shillings with—follow me—it was an escallop, and a mint-mark for that very year of Elizabeth.

    Back o' the Moon Oliver Onions
  • For sea-going vessels it was nothing, but for these cockleshell river boats it was anything but fun.

    Diary of an Enlisted Man Lawrence Van Alstyne
British Dictionary definitions for cockleshell


the shell of the cockle
any of the valves of the shells of certain other bivalve molluscs, such as the scallop
any small light boat
a badge worn by pilgrims
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
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