• synonyms


noun, plural (especially collectively) stock·fish, (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) stock·fish·es.
  1. fish, as the cod or haddock, cured by splitting and drying in the air without salt.
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Origin of stockfish

1250–1300; Middle English stocfish < Middle Dutch stocvisch. See stock, fish
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for stockfish

Historical Examples

  • What withered reed of courtesy, what stockfish of gallantry, may this be?

    Captain Ravenshaw

    Robert Neilson Stephens

  • That is full of old armour, and dried herrings, and stockfish.

    Grisly Grisell

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • When the summer was far gone, he went out to Snowfellness to get him stockfish.

    The Story of Grettir The Strong

    Translated by Eirikr Magnusson and William Morris

  • You have been held too long in this miserable suspension, neither maid nor wife, neither woman nor stockfish.

  • The stockfish is a dried and cured cod, split open and with the head removed.

    A Complete Guide to Heraldry

    Arthur Charles Fox-Davies

British Dictionary definitions for stockfish


noun plural -fish or -fishes
  1. fish, such as cod or haddock, cured by splitting and drying in the air
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Word Origin

C13: of uncertain origin. Perhaps from stock (in the sense: stem, tree trunk) because it was dried on wooden racks. Compare Middle Dutch stocvisch
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