One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A coarse-mannered woman who is prone to shouting.‘the screech of a fishwife’
- ‘We were made to sit side by side at the table and flog our biographies like fishwives.’
- ‘We speak all the time the two of us, gossiping like a couple of old fishwives.’
- ‘We went to Venice a few days later and it was full of dirty pigeons and busloads of ghastly American tourists shrieking at each other like fishwives.’
- ‘Then there was a revolution in my building, with all these fishwives banging on my door because I'd insulted them.’
- ‘The final five minutes seem to shape the entire programme, when the two families get together and basically sling the mud like old fishwives.’
2archaic A woman who sells fish.
- ‘On the quayside fishwives gut fish by hand and the catch is kippered by traditional methods.’
- ‘Sometimes their existence is recorded by artists of their day, like the Newhaven fishwives photographed by Hill and Adams in 1848.’
- ‘A group of fishwives pose with a selection of crabs.’
- ‘‘Monica will sell you a cooked fish!’ the fishwife boomed.’
- ‘Many of the fishwives travelled with the men to the fishing grounds to gut and cure so great a catch.’
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