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cliff swallow

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noun
  1. any of several North American birds of the genus Hirundo, especially H. pyrrhonota, that live colonially and build bottle-shaped mud nests on cliffs and walls.

Origin of cliff swallow

An Americanism dating back to 1815–25
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cliff swallow

Historical Examples

  • The barn swallow is heard first, followed in a day or two by the squeaking of the cliff-swallow.

    Wake-Robin

    John Burroughs

  • Most of the monsoon broods of the Indian cliff-swallow emerge from the eggs in August.

  • The cliff-swallow, strange emigrant, that eastward takes his way, has come and gone again in my time.

    My Garden Acquaintance

    James Russell Lowell


British Dictionary definitions for cliff swallow

cliff swallow

noun
  1. an American swallow, Petrochelidon pyrrhonota, that has a square-tipped tail and builds nests of mud on cliffs, walls, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012