some of a number of tiny gregarious cetacean animals having a dull snout and lots of teeth
- Any tiny cetacean regarding the genus Phocaeligna specifically Phocaeligna communis or Phocaeligna phocaeligna of European countries and also the closely allied US species Phocaeligna Americana colour is dusky or blackish above paler beneath they're closely allied to the dolphins but have a shorter snout Called in addition harbor porpoise herring hag puffing pig and snuffer
- Any little cetacean associated with the genus Phocaena, specially P. communis, or P. phocaena, of Europe, together with closely allied American species (P. Americana). The color is dusky or blackish overhead, paler beneath. These are generally closely allied to your dolphins, but have a shorter snout. Called also harbor porpoise, herring hag, puffing pig, and snuffer.
- a genuine dolphin (Delphinus); -- often so-called by sailors.
very early 14c., porpas, from Old French porpais (12c.) "porpoise," virtually "pork fish," from porc "pork" (see chicken (letter.)) + peis "fish," from Latin piscis "fish" (see seafood (n.)). The Old French term most likely is a loan-translation of a Germanic term meaning actually "sea-hog, mere-swine," like Old Norse mar-svin, Old High German meri-swin, center Dutch mereswijn "porpoise" (the final that additionally ended up being borrowed directly into French and became Modern French marsouin). Classical Latin had an identical title, porculus marinus (in Pliny), together with notion behind title likely is a fancied resemblance associated with the snout to that of a pig.
It may never have occurred to you that a porpoise spouts.