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angelfish

[eyn-juh l-fish]
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noun, plural (especially collectively) an·gel·fish, (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) an·gel·fish·es.
  1. a South American freshwater fish, genus Pterophyllum, often kept in aquariums.Compare scalare.
  2. angel shark.
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Origin of angelfish

First recorded in 1660–70; angel + fish
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for angelfish

angelfish

noun plural -fish or -fishes
  1. any of various small tropical marine percoid fishes of the genus Pomacanthus and related genera, which have a deep flattened brightly coloured body and brushlike teeth: family ChaetodontidaeSee also butterflyfish
  2. Also called: scalare a South American cichlid, Pterophyllum scalare, of the Amazon region, having a compressed body and large dorsal and anal fins: a popular aquarium fish
  3. another name for angel shark
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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

Word Origin and History for angelfish

n.

also angel-fish, 1660s, from angel + fish (n.); so called for its "wings."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper