- a small arctic whale, Monodon monoceros, the male of which has a long, spirally twisted tusk extending forward from the upper jaw.
Origin of narwhal
Related Words for narwhalmammal, porpoise, whopper, cetacean, grampus, baleen, finback, beluga, rorqual, narwhal, orca, ceta, cete, orc, sei
Examples from the Web for narwhal
Historical Examples of narwhal
Why the narwhal's tooth does not conform to this rule is a mystery.More Science From an Easy Chair
Sir E. Ray (Edwin Ray) Lankester
The top of this totem is an exact replica of our narwhal horn.The Boy Scouts on the Yukon
In the 'tween-decks of the Narwhal, Buck and Curly joined two other dogs.The Call of the Wild
And—I think I may say I have the finest collection of narwhal tusks in the world.Actions and Reactions
You know the unicorn is always represented with a narwhal's tusk?The Boy With the U. S. Fisheries
narwal narwhale (ˈnɑːˌweɪl)
- an arctic toothed whale, Monodon monoceros, having a black-spotted whitish skin and, in the male, a long spiral tusk: family Monodontidae
Word Origin for narwhal
1650s, from Danish and Norwegian narhval, probably a metathesis of Old Norse nahvalr, literally "corpse-whale," from na "corpse" + hvalr "whale" (see whale). So called from resemblance of its whitish color to that of dead bodies. The first element is from PIE *nau- "death; to be exhausted" (cf. Old English ne, neo, Gothic naus "corpse," Old Cornish naun, Old Church Slavonic navi, Old Prussian nowis "corpse," Lettish nawe "death," Lithuanian novyti "to torture, kill").