rein·​deer | \ ˈrān-ˌdir How to pronounce reindeer (audio) \

Definition of reindeer

: caribou used especially for one of the Old World

Examples of reindeer in a Sentence

a large herd of reindeer
Recent Examples on the Web Charles recites the first lines of the classic 1823 work, which depicts Saint Nicholas, or Santa Claus, and his sled, pulled by eight reindeer, arriving at a home. NBC News, "British royals, and a few actors, offer up festive cheer on Christmas Eve," 24 Dec. 2020 The other reindeer used to laugh and call him names. Christy Piña, Woman's Day, "Can You Spot Rudolph in the Sea of His Fellow Reindeer?," 23 Dec. 2020 Santa’s reindeer could get a little wet this week, or perhaps fly in just ahead of showers that dampen their fur. Tatiana Sanchez,, "You better not pout: Bay Area could see rain on Christmas," 20 Dec. 2020 The pulks will likely be towed by skiers, as the RNLMC doesn't have any reindeer, and probably the RNLMC's Swedish-made BV206 all-terrain vehicles. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Dutch Marines Show Off Their New Machine Gun Snow Sleds," 18 Dec. 2020 Think wrapped trees, twinkling lights, Santas, reindeer, red bows and Christmas angels. Dallas News, "Where to find the brightest neighborhood Christmas lights in Dallas or your suburb," 11 Dec. 2020 There are also special days on which, for $95, families can come to the park on Dundee Avenue for a short visit to see Santa’s reindeer and view the park’s light show, Annis said. Gloria Casas,, "If COVID-19 means you can’t see Santa, maybe he and his mobile Santa’s Village house can come to you," 11 Dec. 2020 One size only, the knit pullover comes in two patterns — a snowflake-and-reindeer option, and a Santa and Mrs. Claus version that just might earn itself a PG-13 rating. Courtney Thompson, CNN Underscored, "22 ugly Christmas sweaters for your holiday Zoom parties," 9 Dec. 2020 The magic of Christmas is what makes reindeer fly, and how Santa squeezes down the chimney of every child in the world with his bottomless sack full of presents. Washington Post, "Santa Claus is coming to town. Try not to infect him.," 9 Dec. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for reindeer

Middle English reindere, from Old Norse hreinn reindeer + Middle English deer animal, deer

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Time Traveler for reindeer

Time Traveler

The first known use of reindeer was in the 15th century

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Statistics for reindeer

Last Updated

14 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reindeer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for reindeer



English Language Learners Definition of reindeer

: a large type of deer that lives in northern parts of the world


rein·​deer | \ ˈrān-ˌdir How to pronounce reindeer (audio) \
plural reindeer

Kids Definition of reindeer

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More from Merriam-Webster on reindeer

Nglish: Translation of reindeer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of reindeer for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about reindeer

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