ai

noun
\ ˈī How to pronounce ai (audio) , ˈä-ˌē, ä-ˈē \
plural ais

Definition of ai

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: three-toed sloth A sloth is a slow-moving arboreal (tree-dwelling) mammal and the name ai was given to this creature because of its high-pitched screech.— Al Perkins Three-toed sloth is a common crossword puzzle clue for the word "ai."— Marty Noble

Definition of AI (Entry 2 of 2)

1 ad interim
2 airborne intercept
3 air interception
4 artificial insemination
5 artificial intelligence

First Known Use of ai

Noun

1625, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ai

Noun

borrowed from Portuguese "sloth (the animal)," borrowed from Tupi aɨ́

Note: The Tupi form is based on that given by Aryon Rodrigues in "Contribuição para a etimologia dos brasileirismos," Revista Portuguesa de Filologia, vol. 9, I-II (1958-59), p. 14. The word can be found with various spellings in a number of early sources: André Thevet, Les singularitez de la France Antarctique, 1558 (Haü, Haüthi); Jean de Léry, Histoire d'un voyage faict en la terre du Bresil, 1578 (Hay); letter of José de Anchieta, 1560, in Serafim Leite, editor, Cartas dos primeiros Jesuítas do Brasil, vol. 3 [1958], p. 222, cited in Antônio Geraldo da Cunha, Dicionário histórico das palavras portuguesas de origem tupi, São Paulo, 1978 ("Est aliud animal quod Indi aig, nos propter nimiam tarditatem pigritiam dicimus" — "There is another animal that the Indians call aig, that we call on account of its excessive slowness the sloth"); Gabriel Soares de Sousa, Tratado descritivo do Brasil, 1587 (ahy).

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Dictionary Entries Near ai

Ahura Mazda

ahuula

Ahvaz

ai

AI

AIA

Aias

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Cite this Entry

“Ai.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ai. Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for ai

AI

abbreviation

Medical Definition of AI

artificial insemination

More from Merriam-Webster on ai

Nglish: Translation of ai for Spanish Speakers

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