ostrich

play
noun os·trich \ ˈä-strich , ˈȯ- also -strij \

Definition of ostrich

1 a :a swift-footed 2-toed flightless ratite bird (Struthio camelus) of Africa that is the largest of existing birds and often weighs 300 pounds (140 kilograms)
b :rhea
c :leather made from ostrich skin
2
[from the belief that the ostrich when pursued hides its head in the sand and believes itself to be unseen]
:one who attempts to avoid danger or difficulty by refusing to face it

ostrichlike

play \ˈä-strich-ˌlīk, ˈȯ- also -strij-\ adjective

Recent Examples of ostrich from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of ostrich

Middle English, from Anglo-French ostriz, ostrige, from Vulgar Latin *avis struthio, from Latin avis bird + Late Latin struthio ostrich — more at struthious


OSTRICH Defined for English Language Learners

ostrich

play
noun

Definition of ostrich for English Language Learners

  • : a very large African bird that runs very fast but cannot fly


OSTRICH Defined for Kids

ostrich

play
noun os·trich \ ˈä-strich \

Definition of ostrich for Students

:a very large bird of Africa that often weighs as much as 300 pounds (140 kilograms) and runs very fast but cannot fly


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