cow

noun
\ ˈkau̇ \

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

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 \ adjective

Verb

cowedly \ˈkau̇(-ə)d-lē \ 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

Critics who say the look is becoming passe can complain until the cows come home. Cecilie Rohwedder, WSJ, "Farmhouse Fever Sweeps City Homes," 5 July 2018 The cows seemed to know what was up when the trailers pulled in to Blue Slope Farm in Franklin, on June 23. Janice Steinhagen, Courant Community, "Blue Slope Farm Sells Off Its Milking Herd," 2 July 2018 But two wheels are generally better than four to navigate Leh’s narrow, bumpy roads and dodge the ubiquitous cows. New York Times, "Delivering Amazon Packages to the Top of the World," 2 July 2018 When she’s done, the robot detaches and the cow wanders off. Sharon Fisher, The Seattle Times, "Idaho dairies invest in robotic milkers," 27 May 2018 Brian Preston, a dairy farmer who milks 800 cows in Quincy, Mich., said trade uncertainty helped prompt a decision to postpone a $2.5 million expansion project on his farm. Jesse Newman, WSJ, "Trade Fight Threatens Farm Belt Businesses," 2 July 2018 Unfortunately, the cow didn’t want to stick around and a foot pursuit ensued. Elizabeth Finny, miamiherald, "This cow cooled off in a residential pond. Here are some ways you can stay cool, too," 26 June 2018 Adults and kids of all ages can take part in an array of activities, from milking cows and bottle-feeding calves to fly fishing and hiking. Lindsay Cohn, USA TODAY, "Agriturismo, American style: 8 farm and food experiences in the USA," 15 June 2018 Versus having to drive 15 to 20 miles to get a horse and come back only to find the cow has moved. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "How Drones Will Revolutionize Ranching," 13 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Together, the Swiss and the Spaniard have ruled for the better part of the past 15 years, cowing all challengers while making their genial domination something well worth cheering for—those plucky underdogs be damned. Andrew Lawrence, The Atlantic, "What’s Going on With Novak Djokovic?," 30 June 2018 That same sort of conciliatory approach toward Mr. Putin would backfire in light of the indictments, making Mr. Trump look cowed, some analysts said. Vivian Salama, WSJ, "Russian Agents’ Indictment Raises Stakes Ahead of Trump-Putin Summit," 13 July 2018 Merkel, who leads Europe's largest economy, said the president's tough talk on trade would not cow European powers. NBC News, "Germany's Merkel says Trump G-7 tweets are 'a little depressing'," 11 June 2018 And Democrats, cowed by years of anti-debt, tax-and-spend messaging, pay regular lip service to debt reduction. Sarah Jones, The New Republic, "Howard Schultz’s Third Way," 6 June 2018 Trump had utterly cowed the league’s owners into banning protests against police brutality, and had achieved at least some success in casting the players as unpatriotic. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump Is Going to Lose His War on Football," 5 June 2018 The risks: New sanctions will hurt Iran’s economy, which could cow Iran into a more subservient state. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "The week’s 4 biggest political stories, explained," 11 May 2018 The more obvious your desire to cow us into submission becomes, the more the story of how democracy depends on our freedom is sounded and heard. David Zurawik, baltimoresun.com, "The more Trump attacks, the more popular culture articulates, celebrates role of the press," 10 May 2018 But Pashinyan — who was widely expected to win — was far from cowed. Washington Post, "Armenia’s parliament rejects opposition leader as new prime minister," 3 May 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

18 Sep 2018

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

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cow

: to make (someone) too afraid to do something

cow

noun
\ ˈkau̇ \

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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Comments on cow

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