Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[pin-is] /ˈpɪn ɪs/
a light sailing ship, especially one formerly used in attendance on a larger ship.
any of various kinds of ship's boats.
a small 17th-century ship having two or three masts and a flat stern, used in northern Europe as a warship and merchant ship and as a tender.
Origin of pinnace
1540-50; < Middle French pinace < Old Spanish pinaza literally, something made of pino pine1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for pinnace
Historical Examples
  • The pinnace was then stripped of her rigging and of all the goods which remained.

    King Philip

    John S. C. (John Stevens Cabot) Abbott
  • Later in the afternoon it was observed that Hornigold's pinnace was not in the harbor.

    Sir Henry Morgan, Buccaneer Cyrus Townsend Brady
  • The last shot, too, that was fired from the pinnace had killed three men.

  • I was helping to get out the pinnace, and there is a mort of dust and dirt about her.

    Standish of Standish

    Jane G. Austin
  • "I'd liefer haul out the pinnace," replied Alden with a grimace.

    Standish of Standish

    Jane G. Austin
  • It was Kamuso, who said he was bound for Sandwich and would beg a passage in the pinnace.

    Standish of Standish

    Jane G. Austin
  • But his men 'added force to their entreaties, and so carried him to his pinnace.'

  • And what all eyes were now intent on was her pinnace, as she covered the distance between us.

    Kilgorman Talbot Baines Reed
  • In two hours we joined the pinnace and launch, who were lying to for us.

    Voyage of H.M.S. Pandora Edward Edwards
  • He had two vessels—one of some burthen, the other a pinnace of thirty tons.

    Short Studies on Great Subjects James Anthony Froude
British Dictionary definitions for pinnace


any of various kinds of ship's tender
Word Origin
C16: from French pinace, apparently from Old Spanish pinaza, literally: something made of pine, ultimately from Latin pīnus pine
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for pinnace

small, light vessel, 1540s, from Middle French pinace (earlier spinace, 15c., from Old French espinace, Modern French péniche; also attested as Anglo-Latin spinachium (mid-14c.)); of unknown origin. The French word perhaps is from Italian pinaccia or Spanish pinaza, from pino "pine tree; ship" (Latin pinus "pine tree" also had a secondary sense of "ship, vessel"). But variations in early forms makes this uncertain.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for pinnace

Word Value for pinnace

Scrabble Words With Friends