Definitions for: Owl


[n] nocturnal bird of prey with hawk-like beak and claws and large head with front-facing eyes



Webster (1913) Definition: Owl, n. [AS. [=u]le; akin to D. uil, OHG. [=u]wila, G.
eule, Icel. ugla, Sw. ugla, Dan. ugle.]
1. (Zo["o]l.) Any species of raptorial birds of the family
Strigid[ae]. They have large eyes and ears, and a
conspicuous circle of feathers around each eye. They are
mostly nocturnal in their habits.

Note: Some species have erectile tufts of feathers on the
head. The feathers are soft and somewhat downy. The
species are numerous. See Barn owl, Burrowing owl,
Eared owl, Hawk owl, Horned owl, Screech owl,
Snowy owl, under Barn, Burrowing, etc.

Note: In the Scriptures the owl is commonly associated with
desolation; poets and story-tellers introduce it as a
bird of ill omen. . . . The Greeks and Romans made it
the emblem of wisdom, and sacred to Minerva, -- and
indeed its large head and solemn eyes give it an air of
wisdom. --Am. Cyc.

2. (Zo["o]l.) A variety of the domestic pigeon.

Owl monkey (Zo["o]l.), any one of several species of South
American nocturnal monkeys of the genus Nyctipithecus.
They have very large eyes. Called also durukuli.

Owl moth (Zo["o]l.), a very large moth (Erebus strix).
The expanse of its wings is over ten inches.

Owl parrot (Zo["o]l.), the kakapo.

Sea owl (Zo["o]l.), the lumpfish.

Owl train, a cant name for certain railway trains whose run
is in the nighttime.


Owl, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Owled; p. pr. & vb. n.
Owling.]
1. To pry about; to prowl. [Prov. Eng.]

2. To carry wool or sheep out of England. [Obs.]

Note: This was formerly illegal, and was done chiefly by
night.

3. Hence, to carry on any contraband trade. [Eng.]

Synonyms: bird of Minerva, bird of night, hooter

See Also: Asio otus, Athene noctua, barn owl, barred owl, bird of prey, great gray owl, hawk owl, hoot owl, horned owl, laughing jackass, laughing owl, little owl, long-eared owl, order Strigiformes, Otus asio, owlet, raptor, raptorial bird, Sceloglaux albifacies, scops owl, screech owl, Strigiformes, Strix aluco, Strix nebulosa, Strix varia, Surnia ulula, tawny owl, Tyto alba

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