- Nautical. to haul (an offender) under the bottom of a ship and up on the other side as a punishment.
- to rebuke severely.
Also keel·hale [keel-heyl] /ˈkil heɪl/.
Origin of keelhaul
Also called keel·drag [keel-drag] /ˈkilˌdræg/, keel·rake [keel-reyk] /ˈkilˌreɪk/.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for keelhaul
"Keelhaul me if I cut adrift at this stage of the game," answered Ferral.Motor Matt's Hard Luck
Stanley R. Matthews
He had sneaked in without Aunt's knowing it, and on reaching home was heard to express a strong desire to 'keelhaul them doctors.'The North Pacific
Willis Boyd Allen
While he was considering the matter, Mr. Lowington went on deck, and investigated the plot to keelhaul the professor.Dikes and Ditches
"Yes, you may go; but I'll keelhaul every man who's not off to his work by daylight—recollect that," replied Vanderdecken.George Cruikshank's Omnibus
- to drag (a person) by a rope from one side of a vessel to the other through the water under the keel
- to rebuke harshly
C17: from Dutch kielhalen; see keel 1, haul
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 keelhaul
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper