drom·​e·​dary ˈdrä-mə-ˌder-ē How to pronounce dromedary (audio)
 also  ˈdrə-,
plural dromedaries
: the one-humped camel (Camelus dromedarius) currently existing only as a domestic or feral animal
… it was only the introduction of the dromedary to North Africa about the second century A.D. that made feasible in terms of costs and risks regular caravan trade from one rim of the Western Sahara to the other.Ross E. Dunn

Examples of dromedary in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In this instance, the virus originated in dromedaries, a type of camel. Michael T. Osterholm, Foreign Affairs, 9 June 2020 The idea was designed to bring some neighborly joy while hopefully avoiding HOA fines for recipients of the dromedary. Sasha Hupka, The Arizona Republic, 2 Feb. 2023 In addition to featuring in pageants and races, historically these single-hump dromedaries have been used for transport across the harsh deserts of the Arabian Peninsula, as well as a source of meat and milk. Nadia Leigh-Hewitson, CNN, 1 Mar. 2023 The dromedary wasn't real and wasn't in pristine condition. Sasha Hupka, The Arizona Republic, 2 Feb. 2023 One of the most colorful examples is heat-shock protein in dromedary camels, which play a role in homeostasis and heat tolerance. Corinne Purtillstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 20 Oct. 2022 For thousands of years the Arabian Peninsula has been home to domesticated dromedary camels. Nadia Leigh-Hewitson, CNN, 11 July 2022 Ancestors of the dromedary and Bactrian varieties familiar today migrated across the Bering Land Bridge, while predecessors of llamas and alpacas moved to South America. Rachael Lallensack, Smithsonian Magazine, 7 Feb. 2022 Some involve familiar names believed to be sources or intermediaries in previous coronavirus outbreaks, such as horseshoe bats, palm civets, dromedary camels and pangolins. Amy Dockser Marcus, WSJ, 25 Mar. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dromedary.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English dromedarie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin dromedarius, from Latin dromad-, dromas, from Greek, running; akin to Greek dramein to run, dromos racecourse, Sanskrit dramati he runs about

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of dromedary was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near dromedary

Cite this Entry

“Dromedary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dromedary. Accessed 29 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


drom·​e·​dary ˈdräm-ə-ˌder-ē How to pronounce dromedary (audio)
 also  ˈdrəm-
plural dromedaries
: the one-humped camel of western Asia and northern Africa

called also Arabian camel

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