Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

hyena

play
noun hy·e·na \hī-ˈē-nə\

Simple Definition of hyena

  • : a large animal of Asia and Africa that eats the flesh of dead animals

Full Definition of hyena

plural hyenas also hyena

  1. :  any of several large strong nocturnal carnivorous Old World mammals (family Hyaenidae) that usually feed as scavengers

hy·e·nic play \-ˈē-nik, -ˈe-nik\ adjective

Origin of hyena

Middle English hyene, from Latin hyaena, from Greek hyaina, from hys hog — more at sow


First Known Use: 14th century


HYENA Defined for Kids

hyena

play
noun hy·e·na \hī-ˈē-nə\

Definition of hyena

  1. :  a large doglike mammal of Asia and Africa that lives on flesh





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up hyena? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 12, 2016

of, relating to, or suggestive of marble

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

16.96 pounds 100 pounds 2.2 pounds 196.5 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ