One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The blowhole of a whale or other cetacean.
2The opening of a spout or chute; an opening for a spout.
3A natural opening in rocks or ice through which the sea spouts.
4Mining A short, sloping side passage. Compare "spout-road". Now rare.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in Thomas Johnson (d. 1644), apothecary and soldier. Partly from spout + hole, and partly from spout + hole.
spout hole/ˈspaʊt ˌhəʊl/
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