bestiary

play
noun bes·ti·ary \ˈbes-chē-ˌer-ē, -ˌe-rē, ˈbesh-, ˈbēs-, ˈbēsh-\

Definition of bestiary

plural

bestiaries

  1. 1 :  a medieval allegorical or moralizing work on the appearance and habits of real or imaginary animals

  2. 2a :  a collection of descriptions or representations of real or imaginary animalsb :  an array of real humans or literary characters often having symbolic significance

  3. 3 :  an unusual or whimsical collection a truly astounding bestiary of airplane designs — Peter Garrison

Recent Examples of bestiary from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bestiary'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of bestiary

Medieval Latin bestiarium, from Latin, neuter of bestiarius of beasts, from bestia


Learn More about bestiary


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a severe test

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Emoji Quiz

  • emoji-the-quiz
  • What phase of the moon is this: 🌖 ?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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