ostrich
noun Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French ostriz, ostrige, from Vulgar Latin *avis struthio, from Latin avis bird + Late Latin struthio ostrich — more at struthious Date: 13th century 1. a. a swift-footed 2-toed flightless ratite bird (Struthio camelus) of Africa that is the largest of existing birds and often weighs 300 pounds (140 kilograms) b. rhea c. leather made from ostrich skin 2. [from the belief that the ostrich when pursued hides its head in the sand and believes itself to be unseen] one who attempts to avoid danger or difficulty by refusing to face it • ostrichlike adjective

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • OSTRICH — OSTRICH, the largest of the birds. The ostrich, in its habits and bodily structure, has features similar to those of a camel (its Latin name is Strutio camelus). It was formerly commonly found in eastern Transjordan but by reason of being… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • ostrich — os trich ([o^]s trich), n. [OE. ostriche, ostrice, OF. ostruche, ostruce, F. autruche, L. avis struthio; avis bird + struthio ostrich, fr. Gr. ?, fr. ? bird, sparrow. Cf. {Aviary}, {Struthious}.] [Formerly written also {estrich}.] (Zo[ o]l.) A… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ostrich — (n.) early 13c., from O.Fr. ostruce (Fr. autruche), from V.L. avis struthio, from L. avis bird (from PIE *awi bird ) + L.L. struthio ostrich, from Gk. strouthion ostrich, from strouthos megale big sparrow. The Greeks also knew the bird as… …   Etymology dictionary

  • ostrich — [äs′trich, ôs′trich] n. pl. ostriches or ostrich [OFr ostrusce < VL avistruthius < L avis, bird + struthio, short for struthiocamelus, ostrich < Gr strouthiokamēlos < strouthos, sparrow + kamēlos,CAMEL] 1. a swift running bird… …   English World dictionary

  • ostrich — ► NOUN 1) a large flightless swift running African bird with a long neck and long legs. 2) a person who refuses to accept unpleasant truths. [ORIGIN: from the popular belief that ostriches bury their heads in the sand if pursued.] ORIGIN Old… …   English terms dictionary

  • Östrich — Östrich, Marktflecken im nassauischen Amte Eltville, am Rhein u. der Rheingaubahn; guter Weinbau; 2000 Ew.; dabei Schloß u. Gut Reichartshausen, mit Gemäldesammlung …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Östrich — Östrich, 1) Flecken im preuß. Regbez. Wiesbaden, Rheingaukreis, am Rhein, im Rheingau und mit Station Ö. Winkel an der Staatsbahnlinie Hochheim a. M. Horchheim, hat eine kath. Kirche, Synagoge, Oberförsterei, viele Villen, starken Weinbau, eine… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ostrich — For other uses, see Ostrich (disambiguation). Ostrich Temporal range: pleistocene–present …   Wikipedia

  • ostrich — ostrichlike, adj. /aw strich, os trich/, n. 1. a large, two toed, swift footed flightless bird, Struthio camelus, indigenous to Africa and Arabia, domesticated for its plumage: the largest of living birds. 2. (not used scientifically) a rhea. 3.… …   Universalium

  • ostrich — [13] Greek strouthós seems originally to have meant ‘sparrow’. Mégas strouthós ‘great sparrow’ – the understatement of the ancient world – was used for ‘ostrich’, and the ‘ostrich’ was also called strouthokámelos, because of its long camel like… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • ostrich — [13] Greek strouthós seems originally to have meant ‘sparrow’. Mégas strouthós ‘great sparrow’ – the understatement of the ancient world – was used for ‘ostrich’, and the ‘ostrich’ was also called strouthokámelos, because of its long camel like… …   Word origins

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