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Fish, split, gutted, opened, salted and hot smoked. The term refers to the method of production, not the fish, and was traditionally applied to salmon and trout as well as the, now universal, herring.

In texts before about 1500 'kipper' may refer to a male salmon, or sea trout, during the spawning season. The 1848   'Chambers's Information for People' has; "The adult fish [salmon] having spawned, being out of condition, and unfit for food..are..termed kelts; the male fish is sometimes also called a kipper, and the female a shedder or baggit."

A Kipper

See also:
Red Herring

Punch, 1920. Cartoon May 26th, poem June 23rd

There was a young man of the Peak
Who had kippers for tea once a week;
As he hated the taste
It was rather a waste,
But it gave him a feeling of chic.

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