fe·​line | \ ˈfē-ˌlīn How to pronounce feline (audio) \

Definition of feline

1 : of, relating to, or affecting cats or the cat family
2 : resembling a cat: such as
a : sleekly graceful

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Other Words from feline

feline noun
felinely adverb
felinity \ fē-​ˈli-​nə-​tē How to pronounce feline (audio) \ noun

Did You Know?

Cats have always provoked a strong reaction from humans. The Egyptians worshipped them, leaving thousands of feline mummies and idols as evidence. In the Middle Ages, felines were feared as agents of the devil, and were thought to creep around silently at night doing evil. (Notice that feline is also a noun.) The fascinating family called the Felidae includes about 40 species of superb hunters, including the lions, tigers, jaguars, cheetahs, cougars, bobcats, and lynxes, and almost all of them are smooth, silent, and independent.

Examples of feline in a Sentence

They move with feline agility. the thief was eerily feline as he moved stealthily through the darkened rooms
Recent Examples on the Web Noche is the smallest of four young, feline siblings found homeless and brought to Northshore Humane Society in search of a second chance. NOLA.com, "Pet of the Week," 2 Jan. 2021 An animal kingdom crouches across the lawn: a dog park with mischievous feline interlopers, Cowboy Frosty and his longhorns, arctic snow creatures in tutus and a barn with chicks, pigs and sheep. Sharon Grigsby, Dallas News, "Why the Frisco home just filmed for ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’ is more than a viral sensation," 22 Dec. 2020 The Worst Noel, or his grumpy feline musings on politics and literature? Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "R.I.P. Henri, le Chat Noir, angst-ridden feline YouTube star for the ages," 10 Dec. 2020 Louise is a beautiful, white 6-year-old who originally came with her feline sister, Thelma. NOLA.com, "Pet of the week," 28 Nov. 2020 Kelsey Dickerson, Arizona Humane Society Texas: Looking for love and patience Is there a feline lover out there who enjoys a challenge? The Arizona Republic, "Matrix and more pets up for adoption in Phoenix-area shelters this week," 28 Nov. 2020 Normal feline respiratory rate is 20 to 30 breaths per minute. Star Tribune, "How to read a cat's vitals," 27 Nov. 2020 Cat lovers will enjoy the celebration of feline mythos, from the cat gods of ancient Egypt to purring contemporary domestics, while hardcore Gray fans will be reassured by the usual references to immortality cults, Hobbes, the gulags and so on. Washington Post, "We’ve been looking to philosophers to make sense of life. Maybe we should be looking at cats instead.," 24 Nov. 2020 But there remains in all his jaunty, swaying scenes of communal life a secretive, feline quality, as if he were determined to retain a right to solitude, to singularity. Washington Post, "Jacob Lawrence painted the public and private rhythms of a Brooklyn street," 18 Nov. 2020

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

1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for feline

Latin felinus, from felis

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Time Traveler for feline

Time Traveler

The first known use of feline was in 1681

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Statistics for feline

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Feline.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/feline. Accessed 25 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for feline


How to pronounce feline (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of feline

: of or relating to the cat family
: resembling a cat : like a cat's


fe·​line | \ ˈfē-ˌlīn How to pronounce feline (audio) \

Kids Definition of feline

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to the domestic cat or a related animal (as a lion) feline anatomy
2 : like or like that of a cat feline movements



Kids Definition of feline (Entry 2 of 2)

: cat


fe·​line | \ ˈfē-ˌlīn How to pronounce feline (audio) \

Medical Definition of feline

: of, relating to, or affecting cats or the family Felidae

Other Words from feline

feline noun

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Comments on feline

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