Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To wrap in or as if in cerecloth.
  • n. A fleshy or waxlike membrane at the base of the upper beak in certain birds, such as parrots, through which the nostrils open.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A waxy protuberance at the base of the upper beak in certain birds.
  • v. To wax; to cover or close with wax.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The soft naked sheath at the base of the beak of birds of prey, parrots, and some other birds. See beak.
  • transitive v. To wax; to cover or close with wax.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To wax, or cover with wax, or with a cerecloth.
  • n. Wax.
  • n. In ornith.: Properly, a fleshy cutaneous or membranous, sometimes feathered, covering of the base of the upper mandible of a bird, as of all birds of prey and parrots: so called from its waxy appearance. A bare space about the base of the upper mandible, or a fleshy prominence in that situation, or a distinct part of the covering of the upper mandible, though of the same texture as the rest.
  • n. Also cera and ceroma.

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

  • n. the fleshy, waxy covering at the base of the upper beak of some birds
  • v. wrap up in a cerecloth

Etymologies

Middle English ceren, ciren, from Old French cirer, to cover with wax, from Latin cērāre; see cerate.
Middle English sere, from Old French cire, from Medieval Latin cēra, from Latin, wax; see cerate.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Middle English sere, from Old French cire, from Latin cera ("wax, cere"), or via Latin cero ("I cere"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • (from Latin cera). Hawks, parrots, doves, skuas and budgerigars are among the birds that have ceres.

    February 24, 2008

  • as in "the membrane on the upper beak of some birds"

    February 2, 2007