me·​nag·​er·​ie | \ mə-ˈnaj-rē, -ˈna-jə- How to pronounce menagerie (audio) also -ˈnazh-rē, -ˈna-zhə-\

Definition of menagerie

1a : a place where animals are kept and trained especially for exhibition
b : a collection of wild or foreign animals kept especially for exhibition
2 : a varied mixture a menagerie of comediansTV Guide A menagerie of grotesque statues stood in the garden.

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Did You Know?

Back in the days of Middle French, ménagerie meant "the management of a household" or farm or "a place where animals are tended." By the 1670s, English speakers had adopted the word but dropped its housekeeping aspects, applying it specifically to the places where circuses and other exhibitions kept show animals. Later, the word was generalized to refer to any varied mixture, especially one that includes things that are strange or foreign to one's experience.

Examples of menagerie in a Sentence

a menagerie of rare creatures the living room is eclectically furnished with a menagerie of garage-sale finds

Recent Examples on the Web

Blooms burst out of 6 train subway car replicas, while others were crafted into a menagerie of animals including a momma and baby giraffe. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "See Exclusive Photos From Cardi B’s Bronx Fairy-Tale Baby Shower," 28 June 2018 Surrounded by stacks of fresh florals and a menagerie of hair ornaments, hairstylist Odile Gilbert used a curling iron to create loose waves before vigorously shaking them out and blasting them with dry texture spray for extreme volume. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Rodarte Brings Mesmerizing Glitter Makeup to Its L.A. Homecoming," 6 Feb. 2019 The entry gleams in golden Christian LaCroix, a menagerie of mystical tarot and playing cards, echoing the nearby vintage metallic dining cabinet. Jennifer Blaise Kramer, House Beautiful, "How Pops Of Color Transformed These Classic White Rooms," 17 Dec. 2018 The result is a weird menagerie of food objects that taste like one thing (fruit, usually) but look, in most cases, like an unnatural experiment in food science. Rachel Sugar, Vox, "Halloween is an aesthetic, not a flavor.," 29 Oct. 2018 Contributing to the coziness is a large hearth where the fire is stoked all day long and a rotating menagerie of culinary seekers arrive to warm themselves with morning espressos before the day’s class in enlightened country living begins. Adam Sachs, Town & Country, "How Tasmania Became the Food World’s Newest Culinary Odyssey," 20 Sep. 2018 Carol loved gardening, reading, and caring for her six children plus a menagerie of cats, dogs and guinea pigs. Hartford Courant,, "Carol Ribadeneyra," 3 June 2018 Switzerland The flexible spine and gait of dogs and other mammals have influenced a growing menagerie of robot designs. David L. Hu, WSJ, "Robot Design Goes Back to Nature," 9 Nov. 2018 After a stop at McDonald’s, the pair took the meerkitten home, adding it to a menagerie of four dogs and a cat. Trevor Marshallsea, The Seattle Times, "Missing zoo meerkat case solved with 3 charged in Australia," 14 Nov. 2018

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

1676, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for menagerie

French ménagerie, from Middle French, management of a household or farm, from menage

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Statistics for menagerie

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for menagerie

The first known use of menagerie was in 1676

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More Definitions for menagerie



English Language Learners Definition of menagerie

: a collection of animals kept especially to be shown to the public


me·​nag·​er·​ie | \ mə-ˈna-jə-rē How to pronounce menagerie (audio) \

Kids Definition of menagerie

: a collection of wild animals kept especially to be shown to the public

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More from Merriam-Webster on menagerie

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for menagerie

Spanish Central: Translation of menagerie

Nglish: Translation of menagerie for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about menagerie

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