: of, relating to, or being the sex that typically has the capacity to bear young or produce eggs
In a field of milkweed, I watched a female monarch butterfly deposit a single egg on the underside of a leaf.—Tom Tyning
A few months later, she became the highest paid female performer on the Great White Way.—Susannah McCorkle
botany : having or producing only pistils or pistillate flowers
a female holly
: having a gender identity that is the opposite of male
: made up of usually adult members of the female sex : consisting of females
the female workforce
: characteristic of girls, women, or the female sex : exhibiting femaleness
composed for female voices
a female name
: designed for or typically used by girls or women
a female glove
: engaged in or exercised by girls or women
female political power
: having a quality (such as small size or delicacy of sound) sometimes associated with the female sex
: designed with a hollow or groove into which a corresponding male part fits
the female coupling of a hose
: a female person : a woman or a girl
: an individual of the sex that is typically capable of bearing young or producing eggs
: a pistillate plant
Adjective Most extension cords have a male plug on one end and a female plug on the other. female standards of housekeeping imposed by the women at the vacation cottage weren't especially popular with the men Noun She attended a school where there were more males than females. Females of this species weigh 8 to 10 pounds.
Recent Examples on the Web
AdjectiveOn May 21, a Sunday, some 57 female students between the ages of 12 and 18 were inside bedrooms that had been locked by the dorm’s administrator to prevent them from sneaking out, according to the AP. —María Luisa Paúl, Washington Post, 31 May 2023 The Hollywood talent firm has two full-time staff members dedicated to philanthropic and civic engagement, more than half of its employees are people of color and 60 percent are female. —Ashley Cullins, The Hollywood Reporter, 31 May 2023 Pink Across several decades of stadium concerts in Milwaukee, not one has been headlined by a solo female artist. —Journal Sentinel, 31 May 2023 At the time of the fire, there were 56 female students present in the concrete and wooden building, the fire department reported in its statement. —Tracey Harrington Mccoy, Peoplemag, 30 May 2023 The mountain lion gave birth to female kittens P-113, P-114 and P-115 in May 2023. —Li Cohen, CBS News, 26 May 2023 Hochul’s 2021 appointment made her New York’s first female governor. —Emma Hinchliffe, Fortune, 26 May 2023 When asked about the user data that platforms were collecting, Hand warned that sharing certain information could make BNPL users ‒ who are more likely to be younger, Black, Hispanic, female, lower income and have lower credit scores ‒ more at risk for fraud or scams. —Bailey Schulz, USA TODAY, 25 May 2023 The fire that engulfed Mahdia Secondary School’s female dormitory over the weekend killed 18 girls and a young boy, shocking the South American country. —Hande Atay Alam, CNN, 23 May 2023
NounDaytona Beach Police have described the suspect as a Black female between 25 and 35, who is approximately 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-8 and who was last seen wearing a gray T-shirt and a red skirt. —Victoria Arancio, ABC News, 16 May 2023 Finasteride may also affect breast tissue in males, and in females who accidentally come in contact with it. —Matthew Schmitz, Verywell Health, 11 May 2023 In springtime, sows kick young males out of their dens so the females can breed again. —John Kelly, Washington Post, 10 May 2023 Harris, the first female, first Black and first Asian American vice president, emphasized to the room of fellow Asian American leaders the importance of ensuring that positions like hers don’t continue to remain exclusive. —NBC news, 4 May 2023 The team sampled tusks from one adult African bull elephant from Botswana and two adult woolly mammoths: a male who roamed Siberia over 33,000 years ago and a roughly 5,597 year-old female that was discovered on Wrangel Island. —Laura Baisas, Popular Science, 3 May 2023 Atrocities have happened to everybody in this world, all races and religions, male, female, it’s happened around the globe forever. —Marc Malkin, Variety, 1 May 2023 Gelsleichter said the work also showed that some portion of the females may be reproducing annually, even though previous research suggested oceanic whitetip sharks may give birth only every other year. —Dinah Voyles Pulver, USA TODAY, 1 May 2023 Twenty-one states have banned transgender females from participating in girls and women's sports, and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. wants that number to rise. —Ryan Morik, Fox News, 29 Apr. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'female.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
Love words? Need even more definitions?Merriam-Webster unabridged
See Definitions and Examples »
Get Word of the Day daily email!
Words at Play
Palter, Dissemble, and Other Words for Lying
Skunk, Bayou, and Other Words with Native American Origins
You've used more than you might think
Words For Things You Didn't Know Have Names, Vol. 2
When 'thingamajig' and 'thingamabob' just won't do
When Were Words First Used?
Look up any year to find out
Ask the Editors
Name That Tree!
A quiz that’s all bark, no bite.
Take the quiz
Name That Thing MegaQuiz: Vol. 5
Test your visual vocabulary!
Take the quiz
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?
Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!
Take the quiz
Spelling Bee Quiz
Can you outdo past winners of the National Spelli...
Take the quiz