Origin of right whalereason for name uncertain
right whaleright whale
Origin of right whaleBecause it was the “right” whale to kill
(plural right whales)
- The baleen whales belonging to the family Balaenidae, in the genera Eubalaena (three species) and Balaena (one species, the bowhead whale, also called the Greenland right whale).
From the opinion of whalers that balaenid whales were the "right" (i.e. correct) whales to target because their carcasses were easier to collect.