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werewolf

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noun were·wolf \ˈwir-ˌwu̇lf, ˈwer-, ˈwər-\

Simple Definition of werewolf

  • in stories : a person who sometimes changes into a wolf especially when the moon is full

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of werewolf

plural werewolves play \-ˌwu̇lvz\

  1. :  a person transformed into a wolf or capable of assuming a wolf's form

Did You Know?

Though some doubts about the word’s etymology still remain, "werewolf" probably comes from a prehistoric West Germanic compound whose constituent parts gave Old English "wer" ("man") and "wulf" ("wolf"). The word is related to Middle Dutch "weerwulf" and Old High German werwolf. Another word for "werewolf" is "lycanthrope," which traces back through Latin to a Greek combination of "lyk-" (from lykos, meaning "wolf") and "anthropos" (meaning "man"). English also sometimes makes use of the French-derived word loup-garou, from Old French leu ("wolf") and "garoul" or "garulf" (a word of Germanic origin meaning "werewolf").

Origin of werewolf

Middle English, from Old English werwulf (akin to Old High German werwolf werewolf), from wer man + wulf wolf — more at virile, wolf


First Known Use: before 12th century


WEREWOLF Defined for Kids

werewolf

play
noun were·wolf \ˈwer-ˌwu̇lf, ˈwər-\

Definition of werewolf for Students

plural werewolves \-ˌwu̇lvz\

  1. :  a person in folklore who is changed or is able to change into a wolf



History for werewolf

The modern English word werewolf came from an Old English word werwulf that was formed from wer, “man,” and wulf, “wolf.”



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

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