\ ˈäks How to pronounce ox (audio) \
plural oxen\ ˈäk-​sən How to pronounce ox (audio) \ also ox

Definition of ox

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a domestic bovine mammal (Bos taurus) broadly : a bovine mammal a team of oxen
2 : an adult castrated male domestic ox
variants: or oxo-

Definition of ox- (Entry 2 of 2)

: oxygen oxacillin

Examples of ox in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Introduced to tennis at the age of 8 by an uncle, the 35-year-old Peng is an admirer of John McEnroe and has a lucky cow on her tennis bag to honor her birth in a year of the ox. Andrew Dampf, ajc, 19 Nov. 2021 This engaging graphic novel follows Mei, a Chinese American girl who loves to spin tales of brave Auntie Po and her giant blue ox. Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2021 Previously surgeons enlarged women’s breasts with glass balls, ivory, ground rubber or ox cartilage. Timothy Fanning, San Antonio Express-News, 18 Oct. 2021 In addition to the traditional oom-pah music, Oktoberfest in El Cajon is known for serving up authentic German food such as bratwurst, ox-on-the-spit, potato salad, potato pancakes, pretzels, sauerkraut, red cabbage and a variety of German pastries. San Diego Union-Tribune, 12 Sep. 2021 The ox is believed to symbolize endurance and feminine energy—both remarkably fitting qualities for 2021. Richard Carleton Hacker, Robb Report, 8 Sep. 2021 Daeho also serves beef and ox bone soups and bibimbap in stone pots. Elena Kadvany, San Francisco Chronicle, 19 Aug. 2021 At the northern end of Klamath — 47 miles shy of the Oregon border — stands the kitschy Trees of Mystery A 49-foot-tall Paul Bunyan looms over the entrance, joined by his blue ox, Babe. Christopher Reynolds, Los Angeles Times, 16 Aug. 2021 On one of their trips, Shrem recalled, the two ventured off a trail and Hedaya had a close encounter with an ox. Washington Post, 23 July 2021

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


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

History and Etymology for ox


Middle English, from Old English oxa; akin to Old High German ohso ox, Sanskrit ukṣā bull, and perhaps to Sanskrit ukṣati he moistens, Greek hygros wet — more at humor entry 1

Combining form

French, from oxygène

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Time Traveler for ox

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

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Last Updated

27 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ox.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ox. Accessed 3 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for ox



English Language Learners Definition of ox

: a bull that has had its sex organs removed
: a cow or bull


\ ˈäks How to pronounce ox (audio) \
plural oxen\ ˈäk-​sən \ also ox

Kids Definition of ox

1 : a male or female of common domestic cattle or a closely related animal (as a yak)
2 : an adult castrated male ox used especially for hauling loads

More from Merriam-Webster on ox

Nglish: Translation of ox for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ox for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about ox


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