• synonyms


[ba-toh; French ba-toh]
noun, plural ba·teaux [ba-tohz; French ba-toh] /bæˈtoʊz; French baˈtoʊ/.
  1. Also batteau. Nautical.
    1. Chiefly Canadian and Southern U.S..a small, flat-bottomed rowboat used on rivers.
    2. a half-decked, sloop-rigged boat used for fishing on Chesapeake Bay; skipjack.
    3. (in some regions) a scow.
  2. a pontoon of a floating bridge.
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Origin of bateau

1705–15, Americanism; < French; Old French batel, equivalent to bat (< Old English bāt boat) + -el diminutive suffix < Latin -ellus; see -elle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for bateaux

craft, barge, boat, liner, tanker, dinghy, canoe, sailboat, yacht, raft, ship, catamaran, schooner, gondola, bottom, bucket, can, bark, steamer, tub

Examples from the Web for bateaux

Historical Examples of bateaux

  • For sixteen days the boatmen poled their bateaux up the river.

    Old Fort Snelling

    Marcus L. Hansen

  • At present, they are navigable about half their length for small steamboats and bateaux.

    Old Mackinaw

    W. P. Strickland.

  • The bateaux were set up and waiting at the head of the rollways.

    The Promise

    James B. Hendryx

  • The canoe and bateaux were their only means of transportation.

  • But Clark was no believer in omens, and he ordered the bateaux to proceed.

    The Old Northwest

    Frederic Austin Ogg

British Dictionary definitions for bateaux


noun plural -teaux (-təʊz, French -to)
  1. a light flat-bottomed boat used on rivers in Canada and the northern US
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Word Origin for bateau

C18: from French: boat, from Old French batel, from Old English bāt; see boat
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 bateaux



French-Canadian river boat, 1711, from French bateau, from Old French batel, from Germanic (see boat (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper