hen

noun
\ ˈhen \

Definition of hen

1a : a female chicken especially over a year old broadly : a female bird
b : the female of various mostly aquatic animals (such as lobsters or fish)
2 : woman especially : a fussy middle-aged woman

Examples of hen in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

There were hen of the woods mushroom and chicken nuggets, and halved Koginuts presented with levain crackers. Ella Riley-adams, Vogue, "Sweetgreen and Blue Hill at Stone Barns Host a Grand Celebration of Squash," 15 Oct. 2018 The Classic Dish Coq Au Vin, in which a whole tough older bird —usually a rooster — is cooked in wine, must be the ancestor to this lesser-known dish, in which just the meaty legs of a sturdy hen are cooked in vinegar. Gabrielle Hamilton, House Beautiful, "Gabrielle Hamilton's Braised Chicken Legs with Shallots and Vinegar," 22 Feb. 2013 Kids can explore Six Senses’ very cool new Earth Lab, and collect their own hen eggs for breakfast at the farm. Peter Jon Lindberg, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Take Your Vietnam Trip to the Next Level," 20 Nov. 2018 The final variable to consider is the breed of the laying hen. Tamar Adler, Vogue, "Why Pastured Eggs Are the Perfect Food," 13 Sep. 2018 Even though antibiotics are common in chicken feed, egg-laying hens rarely get medicated with antibiotics. Adrienne Rose Johnson, Bon Appetit, "How to Buy the Best Eggs Possible," 19 Jan. 2018 Unlike Bernadette, Allison was concerned for the hen’s life as well as the lives of the other chickens in the coop. Madeline Farber, Fox News, "Texas woman shocked to find 'stubborn' hen sitting on massive snake in wild photo," 30 Aug. 2018 Kate recently joined her sister for a low-key skiing hen do in France last month (while her husband Prince William went on a separate ski trip with his friends and showed off his dance moves). Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Everything You Need to Know About Pippa Middleton's Wedding," 20 May 2017 The hens are housed on the grounds of St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Cleveland's South Collinwood neighborhood. Phillip Morris, cleveland.com, "Priest nearly killed in ambush robbery still bullish on Collinwood: Phillip Morris," 8 Apr. 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for hen

Middle English, from Old English henn; akin to Old English hana rooster — more at chant

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Dictionary Entries near hen

hempweed

hempy

hemstitch

hen

henad

Henan

hen and chickens

Statistics for hen

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hen

The first known use of hen was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for hen

hen

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hen

: an adult female chicken
: a female bird of any kind

hen

noun
\ ˈhen \

Kids Definition of hen

1 : a female domestic fowl
2 : a female bird

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More from Merriam-Webster on hen

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hen

Spanish Central: Translation of hen

Nglish: Translation of hen for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hen for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hen

Comments on hen

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