One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A small gregarious toothed whale that typically has a beaklike snout and a curved fin on the back. Dolphins have become well known for their sociable nature and high intelligence.
Families Delphinidae (marine) and Platanistidae (the river dolphins): several genera and many species
- ‘In the State of Victoria it is illegal to feed wild dolphins.’
- ‘The purpose of the ban as stated in the accompanying documentation is to minimise dolphin mortality.’
- ‘No captures of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins have occurred in the US since 1989.’
- ‘A group of children saw dolphins swimming by.’
- ‘The former group also gave rise to various endemic lines of river dolphins.’
- ‘A dolphin leapt from the water, the drops of water sparkling and glittering.’
- ‘She has also studied baboons in Kenya and dolphins off the coast of western Australia.’
- ‘And captive bottlenose dolphins have shown themselves to be skilled at replicating computer-generated sounds.’
- ‘In Australia it is illegal to feed wild dolphins or for a swimmer to approach within thirty metres of them.’
- ‘She pointed to the ocean and he looked and they saw dolphins jumping by the side of the ship.’
- ‘I think of trawlers catching dolphins in their nets.’
- ‘The villagers say the dolphin population has halved in the past few years.’
- ‘Common dolphins are sociable animals and entire shoals - averaging five individuals - frequently die together.’
- ‘Some Atlantic humpback dolphin populations are known only by a single specimen.’
- ‘Wild dolphins off the west coast of Australia were the first marine mammals in which cultural learning was observed.’
- ‘Spotted and spinner dolphins inhabit tropical seas around the world along with yellowfin tuna.’
- ‘I saw a gray dolphin swimming alone, like a man in a serious suit.’
- ‘When curious dolphins swim around the boat, the team launches an inflatable boat.’
- ‘We passed numerous sting rays gliding along, then a large school of spinner dolphins leaping across our bow.’
- ‘They go to watch sperm whales spout and dive or to swim with pods of dusky dolphins.’
2another term for dorado (sense 1)
- ‘The researchers studied species, ranging from sharks to dolphinfish, that represented the different stages of fish evolution.’
- ‘The company is currently investigating two locations for the project, which will eventually produce 2000 tonnes a year of dolphinfish for the export market.’
- ‘One approaching construction phase is an aquaculture project breeding dolphinfish.’
3A bollard, pile, or buoy for mooring boats.
4A structure for protecting the pier of a bridge.
Late Middle English: from Old French dauphin, from Provençal dalfin, from Latin delphinus, from Greek delphin.
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