Definition of waterman in English:



  • 1A boatman.

    • ‘So poor was the harvest of recruits that an appeal was issued to the watermen on the Thames to join up.’
    • ‘He then became a Thames waterman, and increased his earnings by writing rollicking verse and prose; he obtained the patronage of Jonson and others, and diverted both court and city.’
    • ‘As a waterman, and later as a lock-keeper, he has alternative, and distinctly illegitimate, sources of income which are clearly not related to honest sweat.’
    • ‘Proximity to the Thames meant that Bankside was within easy access for inhabitants of the city who could cross the river either by foot on London Bridge or by using transport provided by the Thames watermen.’
    • ‘While watermen recognize the right of an individual to work hard and make a living being a waterman, they also know that watermen can be greedy and that such greed hurts watermen in general.’
    • ‘The insurers recruited the Thames watermen at five shillings a day to man pumps and gave policyholders decorative lead fire-marks to fasten to their buildings so that they knew which fires to tackle and which to ignore.’
    • ‘Probably completed during the 1850s, the painting depicts an attempt by Navy recruiters to entice a Thames waterman into the service.’
    • ‘‘Our membership has strong ties to the water and we rely a lot on the local watermen to teach the workshops,’ said the director of the museum.’
    • ‘A well-known waterman at Selby said that the river was in a fearful condition, and this had a good deal to do with the reported collisions taking place and damage done to boats on their voyages to and from the town.’
    • ‘This book includes Tideway, a set of poems arising during a period spent with Thames watermen.’
    • ‘The young Arthur befriended a waterman who took fresh water to the incoming ships.’
    • ‘He was the son of a London boatbuilder and waterman who used to ferry J. M. W. Turner across the Thames.’
    1. 1.1An oarsman who has attained a particular level of knowledge or skill.