cow

noun
\ ˈkau̇ How to pronounce cow (audio) \

Definition of cow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the mature female of cattle (genus Bos)
b : the mature female of various usually large animals (such as an elephant, whale, or moose)
2 : a domestic bovine animal regardless of sex or age
3 chiefly British, informal : a woman who is stupid or annoying Liesel was on such a high that she felt indestructible. "I said," she beamed, "stupid cow," and she didn't have to wait a single moment for the teacher's hand to slap her.— Markus Zusak

cow

verb
cowed; cowing; cows

Definition of cow (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to destroy the resolve or courage of also : to bring to a state or an action by intimidation used with into … like too many Asian armies, adept at cowing a population into feeding them … — Edward Lansdale

Illustration of cow

Illustration of cow

Noun

cow 1a: 1 hoof, 2 pastern, 3 dewclaw, 4 switch, 5 hock, 6 rear udder, 7 flank, 8 thigh, 9 tail, 10 pinbone, 11 tail head, 12 thurl, 13 hip, 14 barrel, 15 ribs, 16 crops, 17 withers, 18 heart girth, 19 neck, 20 horn, 21 poll, 22 forehead, 23 bridge of nose, 24 muzzle, 25 jaw, 26 throat, 27 point of shoulder, 28 dewlap, 29 point of elbow, 30 brisket, 31 chest floor, 32 knee, 33 milk well, 34 milk vein, 35 fore udder, 36 teats, 37 rump, 38 loin

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from cow

Noun

cowy \ ˈkau̇-​ē How to pronounce cowy (audio) \ adjective

Verb

cowedly \ ˈkau̇(-​ə)d-​lē How to pronounce cowedly (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for cow

Verb

intimidate, cow, bulldoze, bully, browbeat mean to frighten into submission. intimidate implies inducing fear or a sense of inferiority into another. intimidated by so many other bright freshmen cow implies reduction to a state where the spirit is broken or all courage is lost. not at all cowed by the odds against making it in show business bulldoze implies an intimidating or an overcoming of resistance usually by urgings, demands, or threats. bulldozed the city council into approving the plan bully implies intimidation through threats, insults, or aggressive behavior. bullied into giving up their lunch money browbeat implies a cowing through arrogant, scornful, or contemptuous treatment. browbeat the witness into a contradiction

Examples of cow in a Sentence

Noun

The cows need to be milked twice a day.

Verb

I refuse to be cowed by their threats. a sharp glare cowed the child into being quiet
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But my dad grew up in the country and bought a farm to start a weekend dairy operation with less than 100 Holstein cows. Alice Park, Time, "Why We Don't Need Animals to Keep Enjoying Meat," 6 June 2019 CAFOs typically house 1,000 cows or more and have come under fire over their odors and the potential impact of manure polluting groundwater and streams. Lee Bergquist, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Tony Evers administration seeks to head off stripping large dairy regulation from DNR," 6 June 2019 Where to eat Bundu Khan is a Pakistani kebab house with a commendable menu of hard-to-find dishes, such as paya, a cozy braise of cow or goat feet with a silky, peppery sauce. Max Falkowitz, New York Times, "A Day at Queens Farm (and the Restaurants You Should Dig Into Afterward)," 5 June 2019 The 23-year-old leads trainings and clinics on roping and reining horses, agility exercises, and cow pinning. Nadra Nittle, Vox, "Lil Nas X isn’t an anomaly — black people have always been a part of country music," 5 June 2019 Companies growing cow cells in the lab are at the moment limited to ground beef. Matt Simon, WIRED, "Tired: Eating Bugs. Wired: Eating Bug Meat Grown in a Lab," 3 June 2019 In addition to a spectacular view and A+ reviews, this Galway castle Airbnb boasts plenty of quirks, including several winding staircases, sheep and cows in the field nearby, and (of course) a turret. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "This Castle Airbnb in Ireland Looks Like It's Straight Out of Game of Thrones," 15 May 2019 David Crowl, who works with two of his sons, Parker and Tanner, did plant 250 acres of corn this year, but theirs is primarily a dairy farm home to 200 cows. The Aegis, "Roller coaster ride [Editorial]," 13 July 2018 In the mid-1970s, the average American dairy farm had about 25 cows. Smithsonian, "This Connecticut Farm Is Milking Cows for Data," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The move by the automaker is the latest example of a foreign company being cowed by the growing power of a critical, but increasingly nationalistic, consumer market. Sui-lee Wee, New York Times, "Mercedes-Benz Quotes the Dalai Lama. China Notices. Apology Follows.," 6 Feb. 2018 Instead, an ambiguous referendum result has allowed a parliamentary rump to cow the much larger number of MPs who know better about the business, economic and social stakes. Joseph C. Sternberg, WSJ, "Britain Risks Death by a Thousand Elections," 21 Nov. 2018 He was never cowed by the rank and reputation of the military leaders arrayed before him. William A. Galston, WSJ, "McCain Championed a Strong Senate," 28 Aug. 2018 The New York Times refused to be cowed, and good for them. Ezra Klein, Vox, "The problem with Twitter, as shown by the Sarah Jeong fracas," 8 Aug. 2018 The increasingly aggressive and abusive Chinese government poses a significant danger, but the free world should not be cowed. Maya Wang, WSJ, "China’s Bumbling Police State," 26 Dec. 2018 Generous pay packets and undemanding bonus targets can be a warning that a company’s board has been cowed by overbearing executives: Think of advertising firm WPP’s problems with longtime former CEO Martin Sorrell. Andrew Peaple, WSJ, "The Nissan Lesson: Pay Close Attention to Pay," 27 Nov. 2018 Upstairs, in a quiet corner, Rupert Murdoch gave Ed Koch a ribbing, the irascible mayor — into his third term — cowed by a tabloid king still on his way up. Jay Cheshes, Town & Country, "Caviar and Cocaine," 6 Feb. 2013 As Camille realizes her younger sister takes after their mother's murderous ways, Amma enters the room, cowed at her sister's realization. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Gillian Flynn Breaks Down the Differences Between the Sharp Objects Finale & Her Book," 27 Aug. 2018

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

Noun

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

Verb

1581, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cow

Noun

Middle English cou, from Old English ; akin to Old High German kuo cow, Latin bos head of cattle, Greek bous, Sanskrit go

Verb

probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Danish kue to subdue

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Statistics for cow

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cow

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

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More Definitions for cow

cow

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a large animal that is raised by people for milk or meat usually on a farm especially : the adult female of this animal
: an adult female of some other large animals (such as elephants, whales, and seals)
chiefly British slang, offensive : a woman who is stupid or annoying

cow

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cow (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make (someone) too afraid to do something

cow

noun
\ ˈkau̇ How to pronounce cow (audio) \

Kids Definition of cow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the adult female of cattle or of any of various other large animals (as moose or seals)

cow

verb
cowed; cowing

Kids Definition of cow (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make afraid They were cowed by threats.

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More from Merriam-Webster on cow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cow

Spanish Central: Translation of cow

Nglish: Translation of cow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cow for Arabic Speakers

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