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Portuguese man-of-war definition


This page has two definitions of Portuguese man-of-war in English. Portuguese man-of-war is a noun. Also define these 0 related words and terms: .



A Portuguese man-of-war (Physalia physalis; sense 1).

From Portuguese (adjective) +‎ man-of-war,[1] from the resemblance of the organism’s float to a former Portuguese warship at full sail.



Portuguese man-of-war (plural Portuguese men-of-war)

  1. Physalia physalis, a marine cnidarian consisting of a floating colony of hydrozoans attached to a float, superficially resembling a jellyfish.
    Synonyms: bluebottle, man-of-war
  2. Used other than figuratively or idiomatically: see Portuguese,‎ man-of-war.

Usage notes

  • Added capitalization, loss of hyphens, and reduction of of to o or o’ are common.

Alternative forms

  • Portuguese man-o-war, Portuguese man-o'-war


See also


Further reading