A sardine is a very small, oily fish. You might like to eat sardines on toast for lunch. If you do, we suggest an after-lunch mint may be in order.
Sardines are most often bought canned, lined up in rows in little tins. The word sardine is actually a general term — it refers to a type of fish, most often a small herring, while a slightly larger one is sometimes called a pilchard. The phrase “packed like sardines,” describing people crowded together in a tight spot like an elevator or a subway car, comes from the way sardines look in cans. The word itself comes from the Mediterranean island Sardinia.
small fishes found in great schools along coasts of Europe; smaller and rounder than herring
any of various small edible herring or related food fishes frequently cannedsee more
sildany of various young herrings (other than brislings) canned as sardines in Norway
Clupea sprattus, brisling, spratsmall herring processed like a sardine
small fatty fish usually canned
a deep orange-red variety of chalcedony