croc·​o·​dile | \ ˈkrä-kə-ˌdī(-ə)l How to pronounce crocodile (audio) \

Definition of crocodile

1a : any of several large, carnivorous, thick-skinned, long-bodied, aquatic reptiles (family Crocodylidae and especially genus Crocodylus) of tropical and subtropical waters that have a long, tapered, V-shaped snout broadly : crocodilian
b : the skin or hide of a crocodile
2 chiefly British : a line of people (such as schoolchildren) usually walking in pairs

Illustration of crocodile

Illustration of crocodile

crocodile 1a

Examples of crocodile in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Then the shelves that house thousands of pairs of cowboy boots, from exotic Caiman crocodile skin to trendy Western booties. Condé Nast Traveler, "15 Best Things To Do in Austin," 4 Mar. 2018 While a classic Bass penny is certainly still suitable, a range of updated options is available from Thom Browne’s slate-gray, pebble-grain model to Bass’s black embossed crocodile-effect pair done in partnership with New York’s Engineered Garments. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "White Socks and Black Loafers. Stylish or Best Left to Michael Jackson?," 26 Sep. 2018 Practically every year, there’s a news story about Hermès’s Himalaya crocodile Birkin — a white handbag with diamond accents — setting a record at auction. Eliza Brooke, Vox, "Michael Cohen’s plea deal revealed he made $30,000 from selling a handbag. The Birkin economy, explained.," 22 Aug. 2018 Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World at the Museum of Science in Boston Through Sept. 3, 2018 Get up close and personal with live crocodiles this summer at what’s being called the most comprehensive traveling crocodilian exhibition to date. Sarah Maiellano, USA TODAY, "The best museum exhibits in the USA for summer 2018," 4 June 2018 The crocodiles were brought to the settlement of Petzael in the mid-1990s as a tourist attraction. Fox News, "Israel faces crocodile conundrum with stranded reptiles," 9 Aug. 2018 An emu holds lemonade, a koala rides a bike, and a crocodile suns himself. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "The Most Unusual Baby Gifts Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Have Received So Far," 24 Oct. 2018 Middleton arrived in a lilac, A-line Emilia Wickstead dress and a crocodile Aspinal of London handbag with nude pumps. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton and Prince William Shared Laughs and Some Rare PDA at Their Latest Royal Event," 9 Oct. 2018 This exhibition features numerous live species, including a Siamese crocodile and an Albino American alligator. Stephan Salisbury,, "Philadelphia museums: Crocs and Minecraft on the Parkway, revamped Penn Museum, and more highlights for spring," 23 Jan. 2018

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

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for crocodile

Middle English & Latin; Middle English cocodrille, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin cocodrillus, alteration of Latin crocodilus, from Greek krokodilos lizard, crocodile, from krokē shingle, pebble + drilos worm; akin to Sanskrit śarkara pebble

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Last Updated

25 Feb 2019

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The first known use of crocodile was in 1555

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English Language Learners Definition of crocodile

: a large reptile that has a long body, thick skin, and a long, thin mouth with sharp teeth and that lives in the water in regions with hot weather
: the skin of the crocodile used for making shoes and others products
British : a line of people and especially of schoolchildren who are walking in pairs


croc·​o·​dile | \ ˈkrä-kə-ˌdīl How to pronounce crocodile (audio) \

Kids Definition of crocodile

: a reptile that resembles the related alligator but that has a long narrow snout

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More from Merriam-Webster on crocodile

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crocodile

Spanish Central: Translation of crocodile

Nglish: Translation of crocodile for Spanish Speakers

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

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