Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The hoarse raucous sound that is characteristic of a crow or similar bird.
  • intransitive v. To utter such a hoarse raucous sound.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The harsh cry of a crow.
  • v. Of a crow, to make its cry.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The cry made by the crow, rook, or raven.
  • intransitive v. To cry like a crow, rook, or raven.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To cry like a crow, rook, raven, or jackdaw.
  • To drive: as, to caw a nail; to caw cattle to market. Often abbreviated to ca'.
  • n. The cry of the crow, rook, raven, or jackdaw.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. utter a cry, characteristic of crows, rooks, or ravens
  • n. the sound made by corvine birds

Etymologies

Imitative.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Onomatopoeic (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The "caw" sounded more crowish, or perhaps raveny, obviously just a shout out to her black bird friends, as a way of compensating for her painful whiteness, blondness and blandness.

    Speaking of Robin...

  • And the murder of crows was in the park again, but took off really quiet with only one tiny "caw" as I walked by after dinner.

    Spa Day

  • The birds were identified as Fish Crows primarily by their nasal "caw" notes.

    BIRDS ETCETERA—Birds, Birding, Birders, and Birdwatching

  • At this juncture the "caw" of a crow was heard again.

    The Meadow-Brook Girls Afloat

  • He was crying most pitifully, and as they rode off he flew up high in the air and his pitiful "caw" became fainter and fainter till at last they heard it no more.

    Myths and Legends of the Sioux

  • Meantime I practised terrible vocal exercises, chiefly consisting of a raucous "caw" something like a crow's favourite remark, and advocated by my teacher in elocution for no reason that I can now remember; and I stood before the glass for hours at a time making grimaces so as to acquire the "actor's face," till my frightened little sisters implored me to turn back into myself again.

    Painted Windows

  • He was crying most pitifully, and as they rode off he flew up high in the air and his pitiful "caw" became fainter and fainter till at they heard it no more.

    Myths and Legends of the Sioux

  • Meantime I practised terrible vocal exercises, chiefly consisting of a raucous "caw" something like a crow's favourite remark, and advocated by my teacher in elocution for no reason that I can now remember; and

    Painted Windows

  • Now and then the sound of a falling leaf caught my ear, and I shall always remember how a crow, flying high overhead towards the mountains, uttered an ominous "caw"; another crow answered, and there was silence again.

    The Lake

  • Charity, that are indispensable to the success of a _bazaar_, was asking Evans to order for her her "caw," by which term she indicated the vehicle that had conveyed her to the scene of her triumph.

    Mount Music

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Comments

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  • Apologies. Would you write it on ċaw?

    April 27, 2011

  • Actually Maltese ċaw, pronounced basically the same as the Italian ciao, its origin.

    April 27, 2011

  • goodbye in Maltese.

    April 26, 2011