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90s Slang You Should Know


[maw] /mɔ/
the mouth, throat, or gullet of an animal, especially a carnivorous mammal.
the crop or craw of a fowl.
the stomach, especially that of an animal.
a cavernous opening that resembles the open jaws of an animal:
the gaping maw of hell.
the symbolic or theoretical center of a voracious hunger or appetite of any kind:
the ravenous maw of Death.
Origin of maw1
before 900; Middle English mawe, Old English maga; cognate with Dutch maag, German Magen, Old Norse magi
Can be confused
mall, maul, maw.


[maw] /mɔ/
noun, Informal.
mother1 .
variant of ma Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for maw
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • maw'll have to feed him up with buttermilk and put drops into his coffee.

  • maw has company in the park—not always just the company she or I would select, were it left to us.

    Maw's Vacation Emerson Hough
  • The kid tried to ketch the attention of maw, but she was sewing, and kept right along, just like he'd been around all day.

    Boy Scouts on a Long Hike Archibald Lee Fletcher
  • And so maw got down on her knees and rubbed out her first feeling of identity.

    Maw's Vacation Emerson Hough
  • maw certified that it was—though I thought not quite so eagerly as her husband.

    They Call Me Carpenter Upton Sinclair
  • “That man wasn't right polite to me,” said maw in commenting upon some of this.

    Maw's Vacation Emerson Hough
British Dictionary definitions for maw


the mouth, throat, crop, or stomach of an animal, esp of a voracious animal
(informal) the mouth or stomach of a greedy person
Word Origin
Old English maga; related to Middle Dutch maghe, Old Norse magi
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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Word Origin and History for maw

Old English maga "stomach" (of men and animals; in Modern English only of animals unless insultingly), from Proto-Germanic *magon "bag, stomach" (cf. Old Frisian maga, Old Norse magi, Danish mave, Middle Dutch maghe, Dutch maag, Old High German mago, German Magen "stomach"), from PIE *mak- "leather bag" (cf. Welsh megin "bellows," Lithuanian makas, Old Church Slavonic mošina "bag, pouch"). Meaning "throat, gullet" is from 1520s. Metaphoric of voracity from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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