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[moh] /moʊ/
verb (used with object), mowed, mowed or mown, mowing.
to cut down (grass, grain, etc.) with a scythe or a machine.
to cut grass, grain, etc., from:
to mow the lawn.
verb (used without object), mowed, mowed or mown, mowing.
to cut down grass, grain, etc.
Verb phrases
mow down,
  1. to destroy or kill indiscriminately or in great numbers, as troops in battle.
  2. to defeat, overwhelm, or overcome:
    The team mowed down its first four opponents.
  3. to knock down.
Origin of mow1
before 900; Middle English mowen, Old English māwan; cognate with German mähen


[mou] /maʊ/
the place in a barn where hay, sheaves of grain, etc., are stored.
a heap or pile of hay or of sheaves of grain in a barn.
verb (used with object)
Chiefly Northern and North Midland U.S. to store (hay) in a barn.
before 900; Middle English mow(e), Old English mūwa, mūha, mūga; cognate with Old Norse mūgi swath


or mowe

[mou, moh] /maʊ, moʊ/ Archaic.
a wry or derisive grimace.
verb (used without object)
to make mows, mouths, or grimaces.
1275-1325; Middle English mowe < Middle French moue lip, pout, Old French moe < Frankish; akin to Middle Dutch mouwe protruded lip Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for mow
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • mow chases in a spoon and tub, big clam, mow places in a boil a piece.

    Geography and Plays Gertrude Stein
  • I would have been looking at it, too, if I hadn't had to mow the lawn and then go to the store.

    Jerry's Charge Account Hazel Hutchins Wilson
  • I mow and she binds the sheaves, and sometimes we both of us reap.

    Resurrection Leo Tolstoy
  • He asked Li to assign mow Wang to him, and this request was granted.

    The Life of Gordon, Volume I Demetrius Charles Boulger
  • Now he must mow and hoe in earnest, however hot the sun, however much he hates to work.

  • Captain Foster turned and left the mow, followed by the owner of the place.

  • The two boys sharpened their scythes and began to mow the grass, for it was haymaking time.

    Fairy Circles Unknown
  • Bob grinned, made a mow at Mr. Grabman, and scampered up the stairs.

    Lucretia, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
British Dictionary definitions for mow


verb mows, mowing, mowed, mowed, mown
to cut down (grass, crops, etc) with a hand implement or machine
(transitive) to cut the growing vegetation of (a field, lawn, etc)
Derived Forms
mower, noun
Word Origin
Old English māwan; related to Old High German māen, Middle Dutch maeyen to mow, Latin metere to reap, Welsh medi


the part of a barn where hay, straw, etc, is stored
the hay, straw, etc, stored
Word Origin
Old English mūwa; compare Old Norse mūgr heap, Greek mukōn


noun, verb
an archaic word for grimace
Word Origin
C14: from Old French moe a pout, or Middle Dutch mouwe
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 mow

Old English mawan "to mow" (class VII strong verb; past tense meow, past participle mawen), from Proto-Germanic *mæanan (cf. Middle Low German maeyen, Dutch maaien, Old High German maen, German mähen "to mow," Old English mæd "meadow"), from PIE root *me- "to mow, to cut down grass or grain with a sickle or scythe" (cf. poetic Greek amao, Latin metere "to reap, mow, crop," Italian mietere, Old Irish meithleorai "reapers," Welsh medi). Related: Mowed; mown; mowing.


"stack of hay," Old English muga, muwa "a heap, swath of corn, crowd of people," earlier muha, from Proto-Germanic *mugon (cf. Old Norse mugr "a heap," mostr "crowd"), of uncertain origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for mow


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The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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