ferry


noun, plural fer·ries.

  1. a commercial service with terminals and boats for transporting persons, automobiles, etc., across a river or other comparatively small body of water.
  2. a ferryboat.
  3. a service for flying airplanes over a particular route, especially the delivery of airplanes to an overseas purchaser or base of operations.
  4. the legal right to ferry passengers, cargo, etc., and to charge for the service.

verb (used with object), fer·ried, fer·ry·ing.

  1. to carry or convey back and forth over a fixed route in a boat or plane.
  2. to fly (an airplane) over a particular route, especially for delivery.

verb (used without object), fer·ried, fer·ry·ing.

  1. to go in a ferry.

noun plural -ries

  1. Also called: ferryboat a vessel for transporting passengers and usually vehicles across a body of water, esp as a regular service
    1. such a service
    2. (in combination)a ferryman
  2. a legal right to charge for transporting passengers by boat
  3. the act or method of delivering aircraft by flying them to their destination

verb -ries, -rying or -ried

  1. to transport or go by ferry
  2. to deliver (an aircraft) by flying it to its destination
  3. (tr) to convey (passengers, goods, etc)the guests were ferried to the church in taxis
v.

Old English ferian “to carry, convey, bring, transport,” from Proto-Germanic *farjanan (cf. Old Frisian feria “carry, transport,” Old Norse ferja “to pass over, to ferry,” Gothic farjan “travel by boat”), from PIE *per- “going, passage.” Related to fare (v.). Related: Ferried; ferries; ferrying.

n.

early 15c., “a passage over a river,” from Old Norse ferju- “passage across water,” ultimately from the same Germanic root as ferry (v.). The modern noun (1580s) is a shortening of ferry boat (mid-15c.).

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