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[ding-gee] /ˈdɪŋ gi/
noun, plural dinghies.
any small boat designed as a tender or lifeboat, especially a small ship's boat, rowed, sailed, or driven by a motor.
a boat used by warships, having four single-banked oars and a spritsail.
any of various rowing or sailing boats used in sheltered waters along the Indian coasts to transport passengers and freight.
an inflatable life raft.
Origin of dinghy
1785-95; < Bengali diṅgi, Hindi ḍiṅgī, diminutive of ḍiṅgā boat
Can be confused
dinghy, dingy. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for dinghy
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Greer moved instantly to the rope ladder where the dinghy was tied.

    The Cruise of the Dry Dock T. S. Stribling
  • In the uproar forward, Madden heard the cries: "Th' dinghy's swamped!"

    The Cruise of the Dry Dock T. S. Stribling
  • Madden followed, trusting not to hit the dinghy and kill himself.

    The Cruise of the Dry Dock T. S. Stribling
  • A man in the stern of the dinghy groaned, and slumped down into the bottom.

    The Cruise of the Dry Dock T. S. Stribling
  • Then somebody who had a dinghy that he did not want asked her if she would like to have a boat.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • Then, with a start, he remembered his own dinghy, and how it would betray him.

  • We in the dinghy, as well as those on board, were listening anxiously.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • We gave way with a vigour that seemed to lift the dinghy out of the water.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
British Dictionary definitions for dinghy


noun (pl) -ghies
any small boat, powered by sail, oars, or outboard motor Also (esp formerly) dingy, dingey
verb (pl) -gies, -gying, -gied
(transitive) (Brit, slang) to ignore (a person) or avoid (an event)
Word Origin
C19: from Hindi or Bengali dingi a little boat, from dingā boat
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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Word Origin and History for dinghy

1810, from Hindi dingi "small boat," perhaps from Sanskrit drona-m "wooden trough," related to dru-s "wood, tree" (see tree (n.)). The spelling with -h- is to indicate a hard -g-.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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