nounpl. -·lin· or -·lins·
a small, slender smelt fish (Mallotus villosus) of northern seas, used as food and esp. as bait
Origin of capelinCanadian French from French capelan, codfish: jocular use of Old Provençal capelan, chaplain
A small marine fish (Mallotus villosus) of northern waters, closely related to the smelts and valued especially for its roe.
Origin of capelinCanadian French capelan from French codfish from Old Provençal from Medieval Latin cappelānus ; see chaplain .
(plural capelins or capelin)
- Mallotus villosus, a type of smelt found in the Atlantic and Arctic oceans.