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

  • n. Any of several small, short-necked freshwater ducks, especially of the genus Anas, that feed on the surface of the water and often have brightly marked plumage.
  • n. A moderate or dark bluish green to greenish blue.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of various small freshwater ducks of the genus Anas that are brightly coloured and have short necks.
  • n. A dark, somewhat bluish-green colour; a dark cyan.
  • adj. having a bluish-green colour

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any one of several species of small fresh-water ducks of the genus Anas and the subgenera Querquedula and Nettion. The male is handsomely colored, and has a bright green or blue speculum on the wings.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A small fresh-water duck, of the subfamily Anatinæ and genus Querquedula (or Nettion).
  • n. The blue-winged teal.
  • n. The act of cajoling or wheedling.
  • n. A Welsh dry measure, equal to five Winchester bushels (nearly). A long teal in Pembrokeshire is about eight bushels.

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

  • n. a blue-green color or pigment
  • n. any of various small short-necked dabbling river ducks of Europe and America
  • adj. of a bluish shade of green


Middle English tele.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Probably from an unrecorded Old English word cognate with Middle Dutch teling ("teal") Middle Low German telink, from West Germanic *taili. As the name of a shade of dark greenish-blue like the color patterns on the fowl's head and wings, it is attested from 1923. (Wiktionary)


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


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