- 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
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for barbel
Also, barbel is a small piece of armour which protects part of the bassenet.The Sailor's Word-Book
William Henry Smyth
My acquaintance with barbel is also so limited that it counts for little.Lines in Pleasant Places
Not even Barbel, Ann, or Metz took any special notice of your sister.In The Fire Of The Forge, Complete
The barbel projecting from the chin denotes that it is a bottom feeder.The Sea Shore
William S. Furneaux
When I reached home I told my wife the story of my friend Barbel.A Chosen Few
Frank R. Stockton
- 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
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
- 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.