—n. 1. any of the larger marine mammals of the order Cetacea, esp. as distinguished from the smaller dolphins and porpoises, having a fishlike body, forelimbs modified into flippers, and a head that is horizontally flattened.
2. Informal.something big, great, or fine of its kind: I had a whale of a time in Europe. 3. (cap.) Astron.the constellation Cetus.
—v.i. to engage in whaling or whale fishing.
Pronunciation: (hwāl, wāl),[key] —v.,whaled, whal•ing, to hit, thrash, or beat soundly.