Etymology
Advertisement

crawfish (n.)

common name of small, long-tailed freshwater crustaceans, 1620s, a variant of crayfish (q.v.) common in the U.S., but not originally an American form. Also in 19c. American English as a verb, "to back out," in reference to the creature's movements.

updated on May 05, 2018

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of crawfish from WordNet
1
crawfish (n.)
tiny lobster-like crustaceans usually boiled briefly;
Synonyms: crayfish / crawdad / ecrevisse
crawfish (n.)
small freshwater decapod crustacean that resembles a lobster;
Synonyms: crayfish / crawdad / crawdaddy
crawfish (n.)
large edible marine crustacean having a spiny carapace but lacking the large pincers of true lobsters;
Synonyms: spiny lobster / langouste / rock lobster / crayfish / sea crawfish
2
crawfish (v.)
make a retreat from an earlier commitment or activity;
We'll have to crawfish out from meeting with him
Synonyms: retreat / pull back / back out / back away / crawfish out / pull in one's horns / withdraw
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.