a. The principal structural member of a ship, running lengthwise along the center line from bow to stern, to which the frames are attached.
b. A ship.
2. A structure, such as the breastbone of a bird, that resembles a ships keel in function or shape.
3. The principal structural member of an aircraft, resembling a ships keel in shape and function.
4. A pair of united petals in certain flowers, as those of the pea.
intr. & tr.v.keeled, keel·ing, keelsNautical
To capsize or cause to capsize.
To collapse or fall into or as if into a faint.
[Middle English kele, from Old Norse kjölr.]
a. A freight barge, especially one for carrying coal on the Tyne River in England.
b. The load capacity of this barge.
2. A British unit of weight formerly used for coal, equal to about 21.2 long tons.
[Middle English kele, from Middle Dutch kiel.]
tr.v.keeled, keel·ing, keelsChiefly British
To make cool.
[Middle English kelen, from Old English clan, to cool; see gel- in Indo-European roots.]
keel /kil/ n.1 a strong piece of metal or wood that runs along the bottom of a boat and supports its sides: The keel of our boat hit a rock when we were sailing in shallow water.2 fig.on an even keel: stable, working well: We are so busy that we had to hire more workers to keep our office on an even keel. v.phrasal v.insep. [I]to keel over: a. fig.to fall down, (syn.) to collapse: The poor man keeled over from a heart attack.b. to turn over, (syn.) to capsize: The sailboat keeled over in the wind.