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

  • n. A Eurasian bird (Corvus monedula) related to and resembling the crows, having black plumage with a gray nape and underparts.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A European bird of the crow family (Corvus monedula), often nesting in church towers and ruins.
  • n. A Daurian jackdaw, a closely related Asian bird (Corvus dauuricus).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. See daw, n.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The common daw of Europe, Corvus monedula, an oscine passerine bird of the family Corvidæ.
  • n. The boat-tailed grackle, Quiscalus major, a large long-tailed blackbird of the family Agelæidæ. Coues.

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

  • n. common black-and-grey Eurasian bird noted for thievery


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Compound of jack and daw The first element, also present in Low German Kajak, (North Saxon) Jöker "jackdaw", may refer either to its characteristic call, often represented as tchak-tchak, or to the name Jack. The second element means "jackdaw" in itself, from Old English dāƿe, and is cognate with German Dohle.



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  • Features in the shortest possible sentence that includes every letter of the alphabet: "Jackdaws love my big sphinx of quartz." Unless someone out there knows a shorter one.

    November 9, 2012

  • "We are considerably out of pocket over this bally pressman johnny, this jackdaw of Rheims, who has not even been to a university."

    Joyce, Ulysses, 15

    February 5, 2007