• (RP) IPA: /ˈɔɪ.stə(ɹ)/
  • (GA) IPA: /ˈɔɪ.stɚ/

oyster (plural oysters)

  1. Any of certain marine bivalve mollusks, especially those of the family Ostreidae (the true oysters), usually found adhering to rocks or other fixed objects in shallow water along the seacoasts, or in brackish water in the mouth of rivers.
    • 1731, Jonathan Swift, Polite Conversation, 1841, The Works of Jonathan Swift, Volume 2, page 344 ↗,
      He was a bold man that first ate an oyster.
  2. The delicate morsel of dark meat contained in a small cavity of the bone on each side of the lower part of the back of a fowl.
  3. A pale beige color tinted with grey or pink, like that of an oyster.
  4. (colloquial, by analogy) A person who keeps secrets.
  5. (UK, slang) A shoplifter.
Translations Translations
  • French: sot-l’y-laisse
  • German: Pfaffenschnittchen, Pfaffenstückchen
  • Portuguese: marisco
  • Russian: у́стрица
  • Spanish: ostra
Translations Translations
  • Russian: за́мкнутый челове́к
  • Spanish: tumba


  1. Of a pale beige colour tinted with grey or pink, like that of an oyster.

oyster (oysters, present participle oystering; past and past participle oystered)

  1. (intransitive) To fish for oysters.

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