cam·​el | \ ˈka-məl How to pronounce camel (audio) \

Definition of camel

1 : either of two large ruminant mammals (genus Camelus) used as draft and saddle animals in desert regions especially of Africa and Asia:
a : the one-humped camel (C. dromedarius) extant only as a domestic or feral animal : dromedary
b : the 2-humped camel (C. bactrianus synonym C. ferus) of desert and steppe regions of northwestern China and southwestern Mongolia : bactrian camel
2 : a watertight structure used especially to lift submerged ships
3 : a light yellowish brown

Illustration of camel

Illustration of camel

camel 1: 1 dromedary, 2 Bactrian camel

Examples of camel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The camel, named Camille, died two days later, Robert Ringo, who runs the center, told The Associated Press at the time., "Dead dog and AK-47 shooting spree that also killed camel spurs Oregon lawsuit," 4 July 2019 Threats include grazing by livestock such as cattle, goats and camels, along with insect outbreaks and burning from human-set brush fires, the study said. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "Frankincense in trouble: Iconic 'Gift of the Magi' is in decline," 2 July 2019 Millions of years ago, the region around the Taurida cave system hosted diverse Pleistocene beasts; fossils that were previously found in the area represented animals such as horses, bison, dogs, camels, rhinos and deer, according to the study. Mindy Weisberger, Scientific American, "Extinct 11-Foot “Super-Ostrich” Was As Massive As a Polar Bear," 27 June 2019 This would be perfect paired with nude pumps during your interview, and even camel-colored wedges on the weekend. Brittany Loggins, NBC News, "11 perfect outfits for your summer job interview (that won't break the bank!)," 20 June 2019 The controversy coincidentally led a neighbor to get rid of camels, which also are considered livestock and not allowed in the neighborhood. Stephen Hudak,, "Orange County decides: goats are a no go in residential neighborhoods," 12 June 2019 Fisher's oversized camel Aritzia coat ($300) is a classic wardrobe staple that helps her embody cozy-girl chic in the winter. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Look Is Money: How Three Fashion Editors Dress for Work," 19 Apr. 2019 Li Ke was a trader on the Silk Road, driving a caravan of camels carrying grains, fabrics, wines, dried foods, utensils and paper. Yunte Huang, WSJ, "‘The Banished Immortal’ Review: ‘Heaven Begot a Talent Like Me’," 11 Jan. 2019 Chopra chose a loose-fitting camel suit, styling it with a classic white T-shirt, brown leather sandals, and a pop of red via her leather shoulder bag. Vogue, "Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas Upgrade the Look of Twinning Airport Style," 20 May 2019

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

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First Known Use of camel

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for camel

Middle English, from Old English & Anglo-French, from Latin camelus, from Greek kamēlos, of Semitic origin; akin to Hebrew gāmāl camel

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Dictionary Entries near camel





camel's hay


camel bird

Statistics for camel

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for camel

The first known use of camel was before the 12th century

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English Language Learners Definition of camel

: a large animal of Africa and Asia that has a long neck and one or two large humps on its back and that is often used for desert travel


cam·​el | \ ˈka-məl How to pronounce camel (audio) \

Kids Definition of camel

: a large animal that has one or two large humps on its back and is used in the deserts of Asia and Africa for carrying passengers and loads

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More from Merriam-Webster on camel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with camel

Spanish Central: Translation of camel

Nglish: Translation of camel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of camel for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about camel

Comments on camel

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


to complain fretfully

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