cor·​mo·​rant | \ˈkȯrm-rənt, ˈkȯr-mə-, ˈkȯr-mə-ˌrant\

Definition of cormorant 

1 : any of various dark-colored web-footed waterbirds (family Phalacrocoracidae, especially genus Phalacrocorax) that have a long neck, hooked bill, and distensible throat pouch

2 : a gluttonous, greedy, or rapacious person

Illustration of cormorant

Illustration of cormorant

Examples of cormorant in a Sentence

Diamond Jim Brady was perhaps the most celebrated cormorant of the Gilded Age.

Recent Examples on the Web

Look out on the cliffs below the trail for breeding pelagic and Brandt’s cormorants, as well as the lonely northern gannet. Jill K. Robinson,, "5 places to spot birds in Half Moon Bay," 12 July 2018 But for Okeechobee County’s credit, the path offers a serene stretch to take in the expansive views and enjoy Florida’s avian population including bald eagles, cormorants, ibis, egret and more. Richard Tribou,, "Explore Florida's Okeechobee County: Tackling the Big O scenic trail," 6 May 2018 Visitors may spot snowy egrets, great blue herons, banded cormorants, wood storks, black vultures and anhingas – a.k.a. Dewayne Bevil,, "Gatorland becomes bird land, and photographers flock there," 7 Apr. 2018 Each day consists of 90-minute tours leaving 8-11 a.m. with Audubon docents to learn about (and spot) herons, egrets, osprey and cormorants, among others. San Francisco Chronicle, "Lake County events a blend of wine, wings and water," 3 Apr. 2018 Cruise among the ducks, geese, and cormorants, then walk the pond path before skipping over to Centre Street for imaginative cocktails and an intimate dinner at Ten Tables (reservations recommended)., "30 great dates in Boston and beyond," 22 Mar. 2018 Wood that drifts into estuaries becomes perches for hungry bald eagles and herons; rafts for weary cormorants, pelicans, and seals; and nurseries for herring eggs. Brian Payton, Smithsonian, "How Driftwood Reshapes Ecosystems," 9 Feb. 2018 Scientists believe penguins descended from cormorants, a group of aquatic birds that persist today, and later evolved and spread. National Geographic, "Human-Size Penguin Fossils Discovered," 13 Dec. 2017 Brian Fagan’s is the first general survey of its kind, and it is packed with intriguing details (like the Chinese training cormorants to catch fish for them) as well as with persuasive generalisation. The Economist, "FishingHow fishing fed the world," 14 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cormorant.' 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 cormorant

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cormorant

Middle English cormeraunt, from Middle French cormorant, from Old French cormareng, from corp raven + marenc of the sea, from Latin marinus — more at corbel, marine

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The first known use of cormorant was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of cormorant

: a type of dark-colored bird that has a long neck and that eats fish that it catches in the ocean


cor·​mo·​rant | \ˈkȯr-mə-rənt \

Kids Definition of cormorant

: a black seabird with webbed feet, a long neck, and a slender hooked beak

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