Barbary sheep


Definition of Barbary sheep

: a wild, chiefly brown bovine (Ammotragus lervia) that is closely related to goats and sheep, is native to dry, rocky, mountainous terrain of North Africa but has been introduced into the southwestern U.S., northern Mexico, and Spain, and has a fringe of long hairs extending from the neck to the inner forelegs and horns that curve outward, back, and down : aoudad

First Known Use of Barbary sheep

1749, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for Barbary sheep

barbary coast, Africa

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about Barbary sheep

Time Traveler for Barbary sheep

Time Traveler

The first known use of Barbary sheep was in 1749

See more words from the same year

Statistics for Barbary sheep

Cite this Entry

“Barbary sheep.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Sep. 2020.

Comments on Barbary sheep

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Homophone Quiz

  • three bears two of them look like theyre whispering to a third bear who looks chuffed to be the center of attention
  • In order to judge how people felt, the senator's office hired a firm to take a ______.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!