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A barbed spear attached to a rope and thrown or fired from a gun, used especially in whaling.
tr.v. har·pooned, har·poon·ing, har·poons
To strike, kill, or capture with or as if with a harpoon.

[Probably from Dutch harpoen, from Middle Dutch, from Old French harpon, possibly from harpe, clamp, claw, from Latin harpa, sickle, from Greek harpē.]

har·poon′er n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.harpooner - someone who launches harpoons
skilled worker, skilled workman, trained worker - a worker who has acquired special skills
References in classic literature ?
The caretaker was a harpooner who intended sailing next voyage on the whale ship Bonanza.
The harpooner came on deck to answer our hail, and invited us aboard.
Here I sat, inside my first ship, a smuggler, accepted as a comrade by a harpooner and a runaway English sailor who said his name was Scotty.
The first thing that the harpooner, aged nineteen, and the sailor, aged seventeen, did to show that they were men was to behave like men.
The harpooner's family was originally from Quebec, and was already a tribe of hardy fishermen when this town belonged to France.
The harpooner looked at me fixedly for some moments before answering, struck his broad forehead with his hand
"Hum!" said the harpooner, shaking his head with the air of a man who would not be convinced.
"Very well, my worthy harpooner, if some vertebrate, several hundred yards long, and large in proportion, can maintain itself in such depths-- of those whose surface is represented by millions of square inches, that is by tens of millions of pounds, we must estimate the pressure they undergo.
Peter Carey was master of the SEA UNICORN, and I was spare harpooner. We were coming out of the ice-pack on our way home, with head winds and a week's southerly gale, when we picked up a little craft that had been blown north.
I saw these advertisements about harpooners, and high wages, so I went to the shipping agents, and they sent me here.
When I found Patrick Cairns among the harpooners, my research was nearing its end.
"Leastwise, thirty years ago, when I was in Honolulu, I met a man, an old geezer, who claimed he'd been a harpooner on a whaleship sunk by a whale off the coast of South America.