Definition of quahog in US English:


(also quahaug)


North American
  • A large, rounded edible clam of the Atlantic coast of North America.

    Venus mercenaria, family Veneridae

    Also called hard clam, hard-shell clam
    • ‘So whether you're scampering up side canyons looking for hidden waterfalls, wading coastal waters in search of quahogs, or portaging an unrunnable section of river, the five water shoes below will perform swimmingly.’
    • ‘The name quahog (pronounced co-hog), or quahaug, is of American Indian derivation.’
    • ‘The beads were made of quahog, or large, hardshell clam shells and could only be obtained through trading or as tribute payments from coastal tribes.’
    • ‘Littleneck clams from the East Coast are the smallest quahogs sold and get their name from Little Neck Bay on Long Island, which was once the most popular source for the half-shell trade.’
    • ‘Among animals, a type of clam called a quahog can live for more than 200 years, and lobsters can live for 100 years or more, as can sturgeon and turtles.’
    • ‘As on the fish serving fork, the terminal of the fork is formed by a thick quahog clamshell with a tiny crab on it, and the stem is lavishly encrusted with marine elements.’
    • ‘Small quahogs less than 2-3/4 inches are so named for Littleneck Bay on Long Island, New York.’
    • ‘Just as later he would return to listing woodpeckers, hawks and wild flowers in Carolina, he is obsessed by Whitman-like lists of fauna: lookdowns, triggerfish, halfbeaks, hairtails, blackbacks, mossbunkers and quahogs.’
    • ‘Researchers hope to develop a new method to reconstruct southwest Florida's past climates using shells of the native Florida clam, the southern quahog.’
    • ‘We don't eat clams in Rhode Island - we eat quahogs.’


Mid 18th century: from Narragansett poquaûhock.