thun·​der·​bird ˈthən-dər-ˌbərd How to pronounce thunderbird (audio)
: a bird that causes lightning and thunder in American Indian myth

Examples of thunderbird in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The group's website shows leaders also wearing thunderbird pendants around their necks. Daniel Gonzalez, The Arizona Republic, 5 Apr. 2024 Like the totem poles, which often contain symbolic imagery depicted in family crests, the petroglyphs feature similar animals, such as killer whales, thunderbirds, salmon and ravens. Jennifer Nalewicki, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Mar. 2023 Figures typically represent clan crests, like a thunderbird, wolf, eagle or whale. Jennifer Billock, Smithsonian Magazine, 19 Sep. 2022 One tale describes a struggle between a thunderbird and a whale that caused the earth to shake and the ocean to wash away people and homes. Washington Post, 16 Aug. 2019 Students learned and lived in many of the existing buildings, which were in the shape of the mythological thunderbird. Jen Fifield, azcentral, 16 June 2019 The new arena will be called the Menominee Nation Arena and feature the thunderbird, an important part of the tribe's history. James B. Nelson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 23 Oct. 2017 Tumwater Thunderbirds Bill Beattie (who was at Olympia for 22 seasons) takes over after Sid Otton retired after 49 years. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, 28 Aug. 2017 The Haunted Mansion (2003) High Anxiety (1977) How to Be Single (2016) Junior (1994) Live Free or Die Hard (2007) My Blue Heaven (1990) Race (2016) Repo Man (1984) Thunderbirds (2004) The Village (2004) Sean Axmaker, The Seattle Times, 30 May 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'thunderbird.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1871, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of thunderbird was in 1871

Dictionary Entries Near thunderbird

Cite this Entry

“Thunderbird.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

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