clipper late 14c., "a sheepshearer;" early 15c., "a barber;" c.1300 as a surname; from M.E. clippen "shorten" (see CLIP (Cf. clip) (1)). The type of fast sailing ship so called from 1823 (in Cooper's "The Pilot"), probably from clip (1) in sense of "to move or run rapidly," perhaps influenced by M.Du. klepper "swift horse," echoic (Clipper appears as the name of a race horse in 1831). Perhaps originally simply "fast ship," regardless of type:
Well, you know, the Go-along-Gee was one o' your flash Irish cruisers -- the first o' your fir-built frigates -- and a clipper she was! Give her a foot o' the sheet, and she'd go like a witch--but somehow o'nother, she'd bag on a bowline to leeward. ["Naval Sketch-Book," by "An officer of rank," London, 1826]
The early association of the ships was with Baltimore, Maryland. In late 18c., the word principally meant "one who cuts off the edges of coins" for the precious metal.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • clipper — [ klipɶr ] n. m. • 1845; mot angl. « qui coupe (les flots) » ♦ Anciennt Voilier fin de carène. ♢ Avion de transport transocéanique. ● clipper nom masculin (anglais clipper, de to clip, fendre) Navire de commerce du XIXe s. conçu pour la vitesse… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • Clipper — Clip per (kl[i^]p p[ e]r), n. 1. One who clips; specifically, one who clips off the edges of coins. [1913 Webster] The value is pared off from it into the clipper s pocket. Locke. [1913 Webster] 2. A machine for clipping hair, esp. the hair of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Clipper — Sm Klipper. Clipper (auch Klipper) Sm per. Wortschatz fach. (20. Jh.) Entlehnung. Heute vor allem großes Verkehrsflugzeug und in dieser Bedeutung nach englischem Vorbild übertragen aus ne. clipper schnelles Schiff ; auch in dieser früheren… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • Clipper — (Пезаро,Италия) Категория отеля: 3 звездочный отель Адрес: Viale Marconi 53, 61121 Пезаро, И …   Каталог отелей

  • Clipper — Clipper, langes schmales Segelschiff, welches sich durch Schnelligkeit auszeichnet, zuerst in Amerika gebaut u. zur Fahrt zwischen New York u. S. Franzisco benutzt …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • clipper — → clíper …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • clipper — |clípâr| s. m. Ver clíper. • Plural: clippers.   ‣ Etimologia: palavra inglesa …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • clipper — ► NOUN 1) (clippers) an instrument for clipping. 2) a fast sailing ship, especially one of 19th century design with concave bows and raked masts …   English terms dictionary

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