mute swan

noun

Definition of mute swan 

: a common white swan (Cygnus olor) that produces no loud notes, is native to Europe and western Asia, and has been introduced into parts of the U.S.

Examples of mute swan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The Crown owns all mute swans (the most common of three local species) found on open water in the U.K. as part of a tradition dating back to the 12th century. Erin Hill, PEOPLE.com, "The Queen's Swans May Have Been Killed by Bird Flu Outbreak at Harry and Meghan's Wedding Site," 5 Feb. 2018 There is a legend that the mute swan was introduced to Britain by Richard I in the 12th century, who brought them back from his campaigns during the Crusades. Emily Cleaver, Smithsonian, "The Fascinating, Regal History Behind Britain’s Swans," 31 July 2017 The guilds are some of the richest and most powerful organizations in London, and since at least the 15th century have been granted the right to own mute swans on the Thames. Emily Cleaver, Smithsonian, "The Fascinating, Regal History Behind Britain’s Swans," 31 July 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mute swan.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of mute swan

1785, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about mute swan

Dictionary Entries near mute swan

muted

mute of malice

mutessarif

mute swan

muth

muthmannite

muti

Statistics for mute swan

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mute swan

The first known use of mute swan was in 1785

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on mute swan

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about mute swan

Comments on mute swan

What made you want to look up mute swan? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a generally accepted meaning of a word

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!