Definition of matelot in English:

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matelot

Pronunciation: /ˈmatləʊ/

noun

British informal
A sailor.
Example sentences
  • TV chiefs are to hold a talent contest to find the best singing sailors, matelots, seamen and ship-hands in the country, and offer them a top music contract by way of a prize.
  • The torpedo broke the destroyer's back, causing her to sink in 15 seconds and thus consigning hundreds of exhausted troops and matelots to their deaths.
  • And the skill of sailing is matched in these young modern matelots by the skill of recovery from the capsize.

Origin

Mid 19th century (nautical slang): from French, variant of matenot, from Middle Dutch mattenoot 'bed companion', because sailors had to share hammocks in twos.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: mate|lot

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