Main definitions of cow in English

: cow1cow2

cow1

See synonyms for cow

Translate cow into Spanish

noun

  • 1A fully grown female animal of a domesticated breed of ox, kept to produce milk or beef.

    • ‘a dairy cow’
    1. 1.1(loosely) a domestic bovine animal, regardless of sex or age.
    2. 1.2(in farming) a female domestic bovine animal which has borne more than one calf.
      Compare with heifer
    3. 1.3The female of certain other large animals, for example elephant, rhinoceros, whale, or seal.
  • 2 derogatory An unpleasant or disliked woman.

    • ‘what does he see in that cow?’
    1. 2.1Australian, New Zealand informal An unpleasant person or thing.

Pronunciation

cow

/kou/ /kaʊ/

Phrases

    have a cow
    North American informal
    • Become angry, excited, or agitated.

      • ‘don't have a cow—it's no big deal’
      • ‘People would, well, have a cow, and for good reason.’
      • ‘I'm afraid Mr. Napper is going to come across some of it and have a cow.’
      • ‘Sometimes I wish I could wring that man's neck for the games he plays while I'm on the other side of the world having a cow!’
      • ‘Well, mom's having a cow so why don't you do the right thing and go to sleep.’
      • ‘Aunt Beth is having a cow about the messes I always make.’
      • ‘So, if you're having a cow about the prospect of dating someone you work with - well, you should be.’
      • ‘You better get going or your mom's going to have a cow.’
      • ‘Her sister did the same thing and you didn't have a cow.’
      • ‘I'm in there for forty-five minutes and you start to have a cow!’
      • ‘I'm just relaying the message, don't have a cow.’
    till the cows come home
    informal
    • For an indefinitely long time.

      • ‘those two could talk till the cows came home’
      • ‘I can micro-multi-task till the cows come home.’
      • ‘We may disapprove till the cows come home, it won't alter that fact.’
      • ‘We could auction these 2200 jobs till the cows come home, but it will be totally futile.’
      • ‘Why do we build them, maintain them, extend them, lovingly twiddle about with them till the cows come home?’
      • ‘The debate on whether the death penalty must be abolished or not will go on till the cows come home.’
      • ‘And from then on, it's rock n’ roll and dancing till the cows come home.’
      • ‘Play it till the cows come home I say!’
      • ‘But, if you want to come in and be a good boy and work well, I'll help you till the cows come home.’
      • ‘Surely she can carry on losing first-round matches till the cows come home.’
      • ‘These players can claim they are Irish till the cows come home but does anyone believe them?’

Origin

Old English cū, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch koe and German Kuh, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin bos and Greek bous.

Main definitions of cow in English

: cow1cow2

cow2

See synonyms for cow

Translate cow into Spanish

transitive verb

[with object]usually be cowed
  • Cause (someone) to submit to one's wishes by intimidation.

    ‘the intellectuals had been cowed into silence’
    • ‘But we have reached a frightening turning point if artists are cowed into silence by violence and threats.’
    • ‘Would we do it if we were not cowed by the threat of a US backlash?’
    • ‘Garang had a broad impassive face; he cultivated a ponderous dignity that often cowed his opponents.’
    • ‘So why have religious people been cowed into throwing their opinions overboard so easily?’
    • ‘Just like real politics, the game cowed me into staying on message, and staying boring.’
    • ‘He is not cowed by suggestions that it would be a failure to end his first season without a trophy.’
    • ‘Economic troubles have fortunately not cowed artists or dealers in Japan.’
    • ‘This severe treatment, which Alexander had his Greek allies confirm, cowed potential opponents such as Athens.’
    • ‘This is an awfully funny story if you are not cowed by the scholarly references.’
    • ‘Already, she was learning a little, because she was cowed before him.’
    • ‘Politicians are too cowed by the media even to introduce the bill.’
    • ‘Some owners refused to be cowed by the intimidation of the clergy.’
    • ‘Subdued and cowed by the warlords, the public has little motivation to mobilize against the militias.’
    • ‘I call them ‘logic monsters’ they use ‘logic’ to bully and cow people into doing what they want.’
    • ‘The impassioned egalitarian rhetoric that asserts this supposed obligation cows many people into acquiescence.’
    • ‘Another alternative is to be cowed into silence by social intimidation.’
    • ‘And anybody who sort of thinks that this is sending a message of seeking to cow anyone is really misreading it.’
    • ‘Don't cow me down if you don't agree, just state your point and we will agree to disagree.’
    • ‘Opposition in Europe and elsewhere to the war was counteracted by a massive propaganda campaign to cow people into silence.’
    • ‘But for once not all the Libs were cowed: some, at least, of the backbench are still openly restless.’
    intimidate, daunt, browbeat, bully, badger, dragoon, bludgeon, tyrannize, overawe, awe, dismay, dishearten, unnerve, subdue, scare, terrorize, frighten, petrify
    View synonyms

Pronunciation

cow

/kou/ /kaʊ/

Origin

Late 16th century probably from Old Norse kúga ‘oppress’.