Definition of ailurophile
: a cat fancier : a lover of cats
ailurophile was our Word of the Day on 04/20/2015. Hear the podcast!
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Recent Examples of ailurophile from the Web
Celebrity ailurophiles include the British singer Morrissey and veteran journalist Georgie Anne Geyer.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ailurophile'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Although the word ailurophile has only been documented in English since the early 1900s, ailurophiles have been around for thousands of years. The ancient Egyptians were perhaps history's greatest cat lovers, pampering and adorning felines, honoring them in art, even treating them as gods. But the English word ailurophile does not descend from Egyptian; rather, it comes from a combination of the Greek word ailouros, which means "cat," and the suffix -phile, meaning "lover." If Egyptian cat-loving sentiments leave you cold and you're more sympathetic to medieval Europeans who regarded cats as wicked agents of evil, you might prefer the word ailurophobe (from ailouros plus -phobe, meaning "fearing or averse to"). That's a fancy name for someone who hates or fears cats.
Origin and Etymology of ailurophile
Greek ailouros cat
First Known Use: 1914See Words from the same year
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