- an important food fish, Clupea harengus harengus, found in enormous shoals in the North Atlantic.
- a similar fish, Clupea harengus pallasii, of the North Pacific.
- any fish of the family Clupeidae, including herrings, shads, and sardines.
- any of various fishes resembling the herring but of unrelated families.
Origin of herring
Examples from the Web for herring
“All the recent notoriety is just an added bonus to the fact that we are doing what we love,” says Herring.
“I feel like a lot of people missed it,” says Herring, despondently.
Herring poured his mind, body, and soul into the song, and the audience ate up every second of it—especially Letterman.
In the interim, Herring took a short break from the band to dabble in his side-project—rapping under the moniker Hemlock Ernst.
In June 2006, Herring dropped out of East Carolina University.
The professor, who was a kind-hearted man, drew a herring across the scent.In the Midst of Alarms
You are as thin as a French herring, you know, with a yard and a half of throat.The Channings
Mrs. Henry Wood
Thus the common expression, 'As dead as a herring,' is due to them.Storyology
They hung around her like a passel of gulls around a herring boat.Cape Cod Stories
Joseph C. Lincoln
"He turned his herring yonder night when he left goodbye to the four of us," he said.The Manxman
- any marine soft-finned teleost fish of the family Clupeidae, esp Clupea harengus, an important food fish of northern seas, having an elongated body covered, except in the head region, with large fragile silvery scales
Word Origin and History for herring
Old English hering (Anglian), hæring (West Saxon), from West Germanic *heringgaz (cf. Old Frisian hereng, Middle Dutch herinc, German Hering), of unknown origin, perhaps related to or influenced in form by Old English har "gray, hoar," from the color, or to Old High German heri "host, multitude" from its large schools.
French hareng, Italian aringa are from Germanic. The Battle of the Herrings (French bataille des harengs) is the popular name for the battle at Rouvrai, Feb. 12, 1492, fought in defense of a convoy of provisions, mostly herrings and other "lenten stuffe."
Idioms and Phrases with herring
see dead as a doornail (herring); red herring.