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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Keelhaul \Keel"haul`\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Keelhauled; p. pr. & vb. n. Keelhauling.] [3d keel + haul: cf. LG. & D. kielhalen, G. kielholen. ] [Written also keelhale.] (Naut.) To haul under the keel of a ship, by ropes attached to the yardarms on each side. It was formerly practiced as a punishment in the Dutch and English navies.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1660s (the experience itself is described from 1620s), from Dutch kielhalen, literally "to haul under the keel," an old punishment. See keel (n.) + haul (v.). Related: Keelhauled. German kielholen, Danish kjølhale, Swedish kölhala also are from Dutch.


vb. 1 (context transitive nautical English) To punish by dragging under the keel of a ship. 2 (context transitive English) To rebuke harshly.

Keelhaul (band)

Keelhaul is a four piece progressive Mathcore/ sludge metal band from Cleveland, Ohio. The members are Aaron Dallison (bass and vocals), Dana Embrose (guitar), Will Scharf (drums), and Chris Smith (guitar and vocals).

The band toured Europe in April 2004, and subsequently went on a lengthy break. With no tours or new music recorded, Keelhaul entered the studio in December 2008 with producer Andrew Schneider to record their new album, Keelhaul's Triumphant Return to Obscurity. In the same month, the band resumed live activity with two shows, one in Philadelphia and the other in New York. In 2009 they played support to Isis for the Wavering Radiant tour (which took in dates across Europe), filling the bill with legendary Finnish band Circle.


Keelhaul may refer to:

  • Keelhauling, a form of corporal punishment used against sailors
  • Operation Keelhaul, the repatriation of Russian prisoners of war after World War II
  • Keelhaul (band), American band from Ohio
  • Keel-Haul, a character in the fictional G.I. Joe universe

Usage examples of "keelhaul".

Not only for that, but, some days later, Keelhaul de Rosa seized me and tried to carry me off by force.

They were to deliver the blind violinist to Keelhaul de Rosa, right enough.

Since the Helldiver had left New York, there had been nothing to show Keelhaul de Rosa still existed upon the earth.

Eskimos had returned, accompanied by Keelhaul de Rosa and four or five riflemen and machine gunners.

Then he was going to hold grim carnival on the glacier with Keelhaul de Rosa and his killer group.

Now get going before I have you keelhauled for disobeying a direct order!

We learned that barnacles gripped it hard enough that nothing else was needed, probably the first use anybody has found for barnacles since keelhauling went out of fashion.

Even though our careers are on the line, even though they can keelhaul us behind Vanda for a few thousand kilometers just for thinking of doing this, much less catching us.

Her tone was warm and sweet: I don't think our guests realized that Pop had just been courtmartialed, convicted, keelhauled, and restored to duty-on probation.

When I first suspected him of talking mutiny, I should have keelhauled him.

She sliced the offending hand with her dagger, and the captain had the man keelhauled after she told him that the villain had tried to enlist her in a mutiny.

She watched as they keelhauled him, tying his feet to a rope and throwing him off the side of the ship, then pulling him under the keel with a rope that went under the ship to the other side.

He swallowed, wondering if he'd be allowed to wear a spacesuit when he was keelhauled, and asked, "Sir, how far does the admiral want us to jump?

So she got keelhauled and let the super in her building have at her one day while Mom's visiting an aunt.

Now get going before I have you keelhauled for disobeying a direct order!