While we were waiting, Tom Lokins, who was harpooner of the boat, sat just behind me with all his irons ready.
The order when the harpooner has thrown his harpoon into the whale.
This was to our harpooner, Tom Lokins, who jumped up on the instant, and buried two harpoons deep in the blubber.
The harpooner, Simpson, picked it up and brought it to its owner.
The harpooner who leaped overboard, escaped certain death by the act,—the tail having struck the very spot on which he stood.
Selecting the largest of the three as his victim, our harpooner carefully laid his gun.
The boat approached the side of the younger fish, and the harpooner buried his tremendous weapon deep in the ribs.
The harpooner moved quick as light, for all the power of the thrust he put behind his stroke.
North, recognising the voice as that of a young man named Macy, his own harpooner, at once bade him enter.
He sent Silva, the harpooner, to get the fo'm'st hands together forward and keep them there under his eye.
1610s, from French harpon, from Old French harpon "cramp iron, clamp, clasp" (described as a mason's tool for fastening stones together), from harper "to grapple, grasp," possibly of Germanic origin, or from Latin harpa- "hook" (cf. harpagonem "grappling hook," from Greek *harpagon, related to harpe "sickle"). Earlier harping-iron (mid-15c.). Sense and spelling perhaps influenced by Dutch (cf. Middle Dutch harpoen) or Basque, the language of the first whaling peoples, who often accompanied English sailors on their early expeditions. Also see -oon.
1774, from harpoon (n.). Related: Harpooned; harpooning. For agent-noun forms, harpooner is from 1726; harpooneer from 1610s.