a large brown rat that is commonly found on wharves.
a person who lives or loiters near wharves, often existing by pilfering from ships or warehouses.
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How to use wharf rat in a sentence
The animal is ten inches long to the termination of the tail, with a body very much the size and color of a large wharf-rat.Summary Narrative of an Exploratory Expedition to the Sources of the Mississippi River, in 1820 | Henry Rowe Schoolcraft
But you see, there aint a wharf-rat left in Windover as ud trust me now!A Singular Life | Elizabeth Stuart Phelps
It was strong enough of nicotine to drive a wharf-rat to suicide.The Flying Bo'sun | Arthur Mason
The fireman had found him—a little wharf rat—in Port Antonio.Wounds in the rain | Stephen Crane
He is a wharf rat at Quebec, and is being used by these outlaws to further their treacherous ends.The River Motor Boat Boys on the St. Lawrence | Harry Gordon
British Dictionary definitions for wharf rat
any rat, usually a brown rat, that infests wharves
informal a person who haunts wharves, usually for dishonest purposes
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