Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[ee-myoo] /ˈi myu/
a large, flightless, ratite bird, Emu (Dromaius) novaehollandiae, of Australia, resembling the ostrich but smaller and having a feathered head and neck and rudimentary wings.
Origin of emu
1605-15; earlier emeu (in earliest E source emia, eme), ultimately < Portuguese ema, attested in 1541 as a name for the cassowary (further origin obscure); the replacement of -a by -eu, etc., is unexplained

EMU Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for emu
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Tommy also shot an emu that came to water, and which we carried to camp.

  • They had collected some of the emu feathers, which were lying all about.

  • Of the thirty species of grallatores the most remarkable is the emu.

  • Can it be the emu engaged with a man-of-war, by any possibility?

    Mark Seaworth William H.G. Kingston
  • We could here gain no intelligence of the emu, so we again sailed.

    Mark Seaworth William H.G. Kingston
  • Indeed she does,” he answered; “but she may not be the emu; and if she is, your friends may not be on board her.

    Mark Seaworth William H.G. Kingston
  • This we knew would, of course, give the emu a great advantage.

    Mark Seaworth William H.G. Kingston
  • The emu, seeing them, turned tail, and off it went at a rapid rate.

    Adventures in Australia W.H.G. Kingston
  • “I wonder we did not come across these when we were running after the emu,” I observed.

    Adventures in Australia W.H.G. Kingston
British Dictionary definitions for emu


a large Australian flightless bird, Dromaius novaehollandiae, similar to the ostrich but with three-toed feet and grey or brown plumage: order Casuariiformes See also ratite
Word Origin
C17: changed from Portuguese ema ostrich, from Arabic Na-`amah ostrich


European Monetary Union
Economic and Monetary Union
See e.m.u.
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for emu

"large Australian bird," 1610s, probably from Portuguese ema "crane, ostrich," of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
emu in Science
Abbreviation of electromagnetic unit
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for emu

Word Value for emu

Scrabble Words With Friends