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[hwawr-fin-jer, wawr-] /ˈʰwɔr fɪn dʒər, ˈwɔr-/
a person who owns or has charge of a wharf.
Also called wharfmaster
[hwawrf-mas-ter, -mah-ster, wawrf-] /ˈʰwɔrfˌmæs tɛr, -ˌmɑ stər, ˈwɔrf-/ (Show IPA)
Origin of wharfinger
1545-55; wharfage + -er1, with -n- as in passenger, messenger, etc. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for wharfinger
Historical Examples
  • He turned to the wharfinger, who was pulling leisurely at his pipe.

    Ancestors Gertrude Atherton
  • I asked the wharfinger if he knew her, but he had never seen her before.

    The Darrow Enigma Melvin L. Severy
  • Mr. Gibney stepped into the wharfinger's office and requested permission to use the telephone.

    Captain Scraggs Peter B. Kyne
  • The dock warrant was issued by the wharfinger as certificate that he held the goods.

  • They had reached the wharf office by this time, and were readily admitted by the wharfinger and given a place at the back end.

  • Mr. Blackwood was a wharfinger at Brooklyn and had married Miss Dankward, who brought him a dowry of modern ideas.

    Married August Strindberg
  • Phone the wharfinger's office and tell him he'll not regret taking a message down to the dock to Captain Murphy.

    Cappy Ricks Retires Peter B. Kyne
British Dictionary definitions for wharfinger


an owner or manager of a wharf
Word Origin
C16: probably alteration of wharfager (see wharfage, -er1); compare harbinger
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 wharfinger

"operator or manager of a wharf," 1550s, from wharfage (mid-15c.), from wharf (q.v.) + agent noun suffix -er + intrusive -n- as in messenger.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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