/pawr"gee/, n., pl. (esp. collectively) porgy, (esp. referring to two or more kinds or species) porgies.
1. a sparid food fish, Pagrus pagrus, found in the Mediterranean and off the Atlantic coasts of Europe and America.
2. any of several other sparid fishes, as the scup.
[1715-25; porg(o), var. of pargo ( < Sp or Pg < L pag(a)rus kind of fish < Gk págros, var. of phágros) + -Y2]

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Any of about 100 species (family Sparidae) of generally shallow-water fishes found throughout tropical and temperate seas.

Porgies, sometimes called sea breams, are typically high-backed, with a single dorsal fin, a small mouth, and teeth strong enough to handle fishes and hard-shelled invertebrates. Most species do not exceed 1 ft (30 cm) long, but some may grow to 4 ft (120 cm). The South African musselcrackers, popular sport fishes, grow to 100 lbs (45 kg). In Australia and Japan, several species of Chrysophrys are important food fish (called snappers in Australia). The red sea bream inhabits deep European waters. See also sheepshead.

Northern porgy (Stenotomus chrysops).

Runk/Schoenberger from Grant Heilman

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      any of about 100 species of marine fishes of the family Sparidae (order Perciformes). Porgies, sometimes called sea breams, are typically high-backed, snapper- or grunt-like fishes. They have a single dorsal fin, and their small mouths, equipped with strong teeth, can handle a diet of fishes and hard-shelled invertebrates.

      Porgies are generally shallow-water fishes and are found throughout tropical and temperate waters. Most do not exceed a size of about 30 cm (1 foot), but some may grow to four times that length. The family is represented by a number of food and game fishes. South Africa, with an exceptional variety of species, is the home of the musselcrackers—popular sport fishes growing as heavy as 45 kg (100 pounds). In Australia, several important food species are known as snappers and belong to the genus Chrysophrys; in Japan, a related species, the red tai (C. major), is another important food fish.

      In Europe there are several valuable species, such as the red sea bream (Pagellus centrodontus), a reddish or golden-silvery fish of rather deep waters. And in the western Atlantic, there are such species as the scup, or northern porgy (Stenotomus chrysops), a small fish, brownish above and silvery below, and the sheepshead (Archosargus probatocephalus), a black-banded, grayish fish growing to about 75 cm and 9 kg, both valued for food and sport.

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Universalium. 2010.