noun, plural (especially collectively) bar·ra·cu·da, (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) bar·ra·cu·das for 1; bar·ra·cu·das for 2.

any of several elongated, predaceous, tropical and subtropical marine fishes of the genus Sphyraena, certain species of which are used for food.
Slang. a treacherous, greedy person.

Origin of barracuda

1670–80; < American Spanish < ? Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for barracuda

Contemporary Examples of barracuda

Historical Examples of barracuda

  • With one powerful sweep I hit one of the barracuda on the head.

  • Mostly they are caught by accident while drags are set for kingfish or barracuda.

  • They looked like barracuda to me, only they were almost as silvery as a tarpon.

  • We worked around him awhile, but he would not take a barracuda or a flying-fish.

  • I did not know then, as I know now, that barracuda grow to twelve feet in the Caribbean.

British Dictionary definitions for barracuda


noun plural -da or -das

any predatory marine teleost fish of the mostly tropical family Sphyraenidae, esp Sphyraena barracuda . They have an elongated body, strong teeth, and a protruding lower jaw

Word Origin for barracuda

C17: from American Spanish, of unknown origin
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 barracuda

1670s, from American Spanish barracuda, perhaps from a Carib word.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper