• synonyms


[kok-uh l-shel]
  1. a shell of the cockle.
  2. a shell of some other mollusk, as the scallop.
  3. Nautical. any light or frail vessel.
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Origin of cockleshell

First recorded in 1375–1425, cockleshell is from the late Middle English word cokille shell. See cockle1, shell
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cockleshell

Historical Examples of cockleshell

  • But you don't tell me you have come over from Saaron in that cockleshell of yours?

    Major Vigoureux

    A. T. Quiller-Couch

  • For two days the sea had been running high and we were tossed about like a cockleshell.

    Australia in Arms

    Phillip F.E. Schuler

  • Now, one rush and they are gone back to their own cockleshell.

    Roger the Bold

    F. S. Brereton

  • That red capsicum is the foot of the animal contained in the cockleshell.


    Charles Kingsley

  • If his own cockleshell went down there could be no succour for her.

    The Moon Rock

    Arthur J. Rees

British Dictionary definitions for cockleshell


  1. the shell of the cockle
  2. any of the valves of the shells of certain other bivalve molluscs, such as the scallop
  3. any small light boat
  4. a badge worn by pilgrims
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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