PRAWN, the name of an edible large shrimp-like crustacean in Great Britain usually applied to Leander serratus (see SHRIMP). The word is in M. Eng. prayne or prane, and no cognate forms are found in any other languages. It has been often referred to the Lat. perna, a ham-shaped shellfish, but this is due to Florio, who by a mistake glosses parnocchie, prawne-fishes or shrimps. The O. Ital. perna and pernocchia meant a shellfish which yielded " nacre " or mother-of-pearl.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)