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[hair-lip] /ˈhɛərˌlɪp/
Usually Offensive. cleft lip.
Origin of harelip
First recorded in 1560-70; hare + lip
Related forms
harelipped, adjective
Can be confused
harebrained, harelip.
Usage note
The term harelip is usually perceived as insulting because it compares the deformity in humans to the normal cleft lip of a hare. The accepted term for this medical condition is cleft lip. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for harelipped
Historical Examples
  • There was the expedition of the harelipped Bird with his powerful force and with cannon!

    The Border Watch Joseph A. Altsheler
  • He recognized at once the harelipped man, Bird, now in the uniform of a Colonel in the King's army.

    The Border Watch Joseph A. Altsheler
  • Behind the harelipped man appeared Perley and Fowler, and six savage warriors, armed fully, and coated thickly with war paint.

    The Border Watch Joseph A. Altsheler
  • "An' I'd like to get a shot at that harelipped villain," interjected Shif'less Sol.

    The Border Watch Joseph A. Altsheler
  • His face was all covered with pimples, and his mouth was harelipped from a sword cut.

British Dictionary definitions for harelipped


a congenital cleft or fissure in the midline of the upper lip, resembling the cleft upper lip of a hare, often occurring with cleft palate Preferred form cleft lip
Derived Forms
harelipped, adjective
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
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harelipped in Medicine

harelip hare·lip (hâr'lĭp')
See cleft lip.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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