Definitions

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

  • n. Any of various wading birds of the family Ardeidae, having a long neck, long legs, a long pointed bill, and usually white, gray, or bluish-gray plumage.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A long-legged, long-necked wading bird of the family Ardeidae.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any wading bird of the genus Ardea and allied genera, of the family Ardeidæ. The herons have a long, sharp bill, and long legs and toes, with the claw of the middle toe toothed. The common European heron (Ardea cinerea) is remarkable for its directly ascending flight, and was formerly hunted with the larger falcons.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A long-legged, long-necked, long-billed, slender-bodied wading bird; any bird of the family Ardeidœ, but especially of the subfamily Ardeinœ.

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

  • n. Greek mathematician and inventor who devised a way to determine the area of a triangle and who described various mechanical devices (first century)
  • n. grey or white wading bird with long neck and long legs and (usually) long bill

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, of Germanic origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English heroun, heiron, from Anglo-Norman heiron, from Old Dutch heigero (compare Middle Dutch heiger), from Proto-Germanic *haigrô (compare Swedish häger), metathesis of *hraigrô (compare Old English hrāgra, Dutch reiger, German Reiher), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kreik-, *(s)kreig- (“to screech, creak”) (compare Welsh crëyr ("heron"), Ancient Greek κρίζω (krízō, "to creak, screech"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • To McEneaney, the heron was a sign — a communication from Eamon — like those dozens of relatives of Trade Center victims say they've received from loved ones.

    For those touched most by 9/11, a turning point in faith

  • If you are interested to hear PM Shaikh Hasina's meeting with the army officers ... here are the 3 links ... which is now blocked againby shameless Prime Minister, saying "contents subversive to the state." what a "chagol" as the Army officers called heron thisrecorded conversation between prime minister and army officers.

    Bangladesh Blocks YouTube After Leak of PM Conversations

  • The speckled heron, which is nicknamed ‘the skulker’, is said in folklore stories to be of servile origin, and, as its nickname implies, it is the laziest bird of the three species.

    The History of Animals

  • The heron was a very special creature inasmuch as it was a solitary bird, quietly stalking its prey, which it speared with its long, curved serrated beak.

    Black Blade

  • The heron is the best example of the rational use of a horn.

    1. General considerations

  • “A heron is a lovely bird,” Grijpstra said, “and that heron was a beauty.”

    Death of a Hawker

  • The heron was the incarnation of a war god on the island of Manono.

    Samoa, A Hundred Years Ago And Long Before

  • The heron is a frog-catcher, and he will stand very still on his long legs and patiently wait till the frog, thinking him gone, swims near.

    Stories of California

  • For the bird was a heron, which is something like a stork that lives on chimneys in a country called Holland.

    Bully and Bawly No-Tail

  • In England, although the heron is a native, we rarely seem to see him; while to study him is extremely difficult.

    A Wanderer in Holland

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.