vul·​ture | \ ˈvəl-chər How to pronounce vulture (audio) \

Definition of vulture

1 : any of various large birds (families Accipitridae and Cathartidae) that are related to the hawks, eagles, and falcons but have weaker claws and the head usually naked and that subsist chiefly or entirely on carrion
2 : a rapacious or predatory person

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Other Words from vulture

vulturish \ ˈvəl-​chə-​rish How to pronounce vulture (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for vulture



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Examples of vulture in a Sentence

As soon as they learned of his arrest, the media vultures started circling. noted that the paparazzi are vultures who could not exist without the connivance of the tabloid-buying public
Recent Examples on the Web Colts backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett is a vulture. Eddie Brown, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Fantasy Football Week 13: Start and Sit," 5 Dec. 2020 The next closet fossil contender is an extinct vulture relative called Argentavis, which had a wingspan between 16 and 20 feet. Riley Black, Smithsonian Magazine, "Scientists Reveal What May Be the Largest Flying Bird Ever," 26 Oct. 2020 Just call him a new-school vulture: Yarbrough won 16 games that year, 14 out of the bullpen. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, "From TBA to center stage: World Series Game 4 starters Julio Urias, Ryan Yarbrough turn flexibility into strength," 24 Oct. 2020 That includes what many consider the foulest fowl on the earth, the black vulture. René A. Guzman,, "S.A.’s Common Critters: Turkey vultures, black vultures more than just Mother Nature’s cleanup crew," 22 Sep. 2020 Both vulture species usually lay a clutch of two eggs, with downy hatchlings that look nothing like their parents. René A. Guzman,, "S.A.’s Common Critters: Turkey vultures, black vultures more than just Mother Nature’s cleanup crew," 22 Sep. 2020 The California condor, a magnificent vulture with a 3-meter wingspan, was almost wiped out in the 1980s. Isabelle Gerretsen, CNN, "How captivity saved these animals from extinction," 17 Sep. 2020 These vulture firms helped create the conditions for economic collapse. J.c. Pan, The New Republic, "Private Equity Is Cannibalizing the Post-Pandemic Economy," 28 Aug. 2020 What exactly makes the radio tower such a choice piece of vulture real estate remains unclear. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Vulture Poop Has Compromised a Customs and Border Protection Radio Tower in Texas," 13 Jan. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for vulture

Middle English vultur, from Anglo-French, from Latin

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Time Traveler for vulture

Time Traveler

The first known use of vulture was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Vulture.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of vulture

: any one of several large birds that eat dead animals and have a small and featherless head
disapproving : a person who tries to take advantage of someone who is in a very bad situation


vul·​ture | \ ˈvəl-chər How to pronounce vulture (audio) \

Kids Definition of vulture

: a large bird related to the hawks and eagles that has a head bare of feathers and feeds mostly on dead animals

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