One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounPlural men-of-war, Plural men-o'-warhistorical
1An armed sailing ship.
- ‘Modern designers might well pine for a vessel with the nearly unlimited range, comparatively low construction cost, and ease of repair and resupply offered by the sailing man-of-war.’
- ‘Jones, a man known for his attention to detail in shipbuilding praised the craftsmanship of the Portsmouth workers when they built the man-of-war, America, in 1782.’
- ‘The stronger and longer the wind blows onshore, the more likely men-of-war will be around.’
- ‘One meets interesting people at government houses, at messes, clubs, and on board men-of-war, and learns about colonial problems, while avoiding snow, blizzards, and influenza.’
- ‘As we got into position, the guns of men-o'-war in the mouth of the Strait were doing damage, and already the village was burning.’
- 1.1another term for frigate bird
- ‘The Eugene Register Guard notes that the island is located three miles off Nicaragua's Atlantic coast, is 20 acres in size, and is home to man-of-war birds and pelicans, lizards, orchids, pineapples, mangos and many, many coconuts.’
- ‘William Dampier observes that he remarked that the man-of-war birds and the boobies always left sentinels near their young ones, especially while the old birds were gone to sea on their fishing-expeditions, and that there were a great number of sick or crippled man-of-war birds which appeared to be no longer in a state to go out for provisions.’
- ‘It is certain that on moonlit nights the man-of-war bird may be seen for hours floating far above the sea.’
- ‘Santiago sees a man-of-war bird circling in the sky ahead of him.’
- ‘Nonetheless, mariners landing in 1803 and 1822 found no inhabitants save ‘cormorants, petrels, gannets, man-of-war birds, and turtles weighing from five hundred to seven hundred pounds.’’
- ‘Small birds are altogether absent and, except the ordinary domestic fowl, we found only the tropic or man-of-war bird, petrels, gulls, and a variety of aquatic birds.’
- 1.2short for Portuguese man-of-war
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