One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A streamlined housing or tank for something on the outside of an aircraft or motor vehicle.
- ‘The center section of the wing, installed beneath the fuselage, carried the two engine nacelles and the retractable landing gear.’
- ‘I could clearly see his engine nacelles, fuselage, wings and tail in the dark.’
- ‘The engine nacelles extend well beyond the wings' leading edges.’
- ‘The oil tanks were carried in each engine nacelle.’
- ‘Oil and fuel coming from three failed cylinders created a fire on the outboard side of the engine nacelle.’
- 1.1 The outer casing of an aircraft engine.
- 1.2 The car of an airship.
Early 20th century (originally denoting the car of an airship): from French, from late Latin navicella, diminutive of Latin navis ‘ship’.
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