Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of various breeds of very small domesticated fowl that are often miniatures of members of larger breeds.
  • noun A small but aggressive and spirited person.
  • adjective Diminutive; miniature.
  • adjective Aggressive and spirited.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A general name for a number of varieties of the common hen possessing the characteristic of very diminutive size.
  • noun Same as Bantam-work.
  • Pertaining to or resembling the bantam; of the breed of the bantam; hence, diminutive; puny; absurdly combative, or fussy and consequential.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A variety of small barnyard fowl, with feathered legs, probably brought from Bantam, a district of Java.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun any of several small chickens, especially one that is a miniature version of another
  • adjective small or miniature
  • adjective spirited or aggressive

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

  • noun any of various small breeds of fowl
  • adjective very small

Etymologies

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

[After Bantam, former town in Indonesia from which such fowl were thought to have originated.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Dutch Bantam (a city in Java)

Examples

  • But about other matters, the bantam is belligerent.

    January 2006

  • The word bantam itself is not only of geographical significance but incites one to conjure images of fast-footed boxers and nimble wrestlers.

    VERBATIM: The Language Quarterly Vol XIII No 4

  • The bantam is the proudest cock in my little yard. '

    The Princess and the Goblin

  • By the use of new state-of-the-art techniques (most of them developed in the present study) the authors demonstrate that one specific miRNA (called bantam) recognizes and regulates the translation of the gene clock.

    PhysOrg.com - latest science and technology news stories

  • By the use of new state-of-the-art techniques (most of them developed in the present study) the authors demonstrate that one specific miRNA (called bantam) recognizes and regulates the translation of the gene clock.

    PhysOrg.com - latest science and technology news stories

  • By the use of new state-of-the-art techniques (most of them developed in the present study) the authors demonstrate that one specific miRNA (called bantam) recognizes and regulates the translation of the gene clock.

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  • By the use of new state-of-the-art techniques (most of them developed in the present study) the authors demonstrate that one specific miRNA (called bantam) recognizes and regulates the translation of the gene clock.

    THE MEDICAL NEWS

  • By the use of new state-of-the-art techniques (most of them developed in the present study) the authors demonstrate that one specific miRNA (called bantam) recognizes and regulates the translation of the gene clock.

    PhysOrg.com - latest science and technology news stories

  • Told you my bantam was the form horse, didn't I? "

    Fiancée

  • Told you my bantam was the form horse, didn't I? "

    Flashman In The Great Game

Comments

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  • The nickname (in the plural) of the South African definitive stamp series of 1942-43. Wartime economy measures required that stamps be made smaller than usual to conserve paper.

    August 25, 2008

  • Allie, call the birds in,

    The birds from the sky!

    Allie calls, Allie sings,

    Down they all fly:

    First there came

    Two white doves,

    Then a sparrow from his nest,

    Then a clucking bantam hen,

    Then a robin red-breast.

    - Robert Graves, 'Allie'.

    November 3, 2008

  • I have a few breeds of bantam (or banty) chickens in my backyard flock. The most interesting looking ones are the white silkies, which look like the offspring of rabbits and chickens (bright white and fluffy feathers).

    In fact, if you happen to have a white rabbit living around the farm, you may soon find it and your silky hen engaged in some rather frantic interspecific relations (an image not easily purged from the mind).

    November 5, 2008

  • Ugh! See also tuna of the yard.

    November 5, 2008

  • I have been to Bantam (Banten). It remains passingly pleasant, though the has coastline moved from the heart of the town.

    November 5, 2008

  • Elgiad, you raise chickens? Or they're just pets?

    November 5, 2008

  • I raise them for their eggs, and they do make great pets if you have the means to keep them. Mine is a flock of mixed breeds which keeps things interesting since each breed boasts it's own unique characteristics and each bird it's own personality. I also have a couple of albino pigeons and a pair of snowy ducks, but they, while being pleasing to the eye, are not nearly as interesting as the chickens.

    I used to have an albino rabbit living in the hen house. However, their cohabitation, as I explained earlier in this comment thread, was not conducive to the well being of the hens (even the ones that weren't white and fluffy).

    November 6, 2008

  • The "image search" link on this page brings up something interesting: lots of sports teams, not so many chickens. (But the ones that are there are really pretty.)

    November 6, 2008

  • I noticed that. An image search on Google yields results that include chickens.

    November 6, 2008

  • In fact, here is a link to a collection of images of some fine silky specimens.

    November 6, 2008