barbel

[ bahr-buh l ]
/ ˈbɑr bəl /

noun

a slender, external process on the jaw or other part of the head of certain fishes.
any of various cyprinoid fishes of the genus Barbus, especially B. barbus, of European waters.

Origin of barbel

1400–1450; late Middle English barbell < Middle French barbel (French barbeau) < Vulgar Latin *barbellus, equivalent to Late Latin barb(us) a barbel (fish) (akin to Latin barba beard) + Latin -ellus -elle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for barbel

barbel
/ (ˈbɑːbəl) /

noun

any of several slender tactile spines or bristles that hang from the jaws of certain fishes, such as the catfish and carp
any of several European cyprinid fishes of the genus Barbus, esp B. barbus, that resemble the carp but have a longer body and pointed snout

Word Origin for barbel

C14: from Old French, from Latin barbus, from barba beard
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

Science definitions for barbel

barbel
[ bärbəl ]

A slender, whiskerlike feeler extending from the head of certain fish, such as the catfish. It is used for touch and taste.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.