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[awr-nuh-thol-uh-jee] /ˌɔr nəˈθɒl ə dʒi/
the branch of zoology that deals with birds.
Origin of ornithology
From the New Latin word ornithologia, dating back to 1645-55. See ornitho-, -logy
Related forms
[awr-nuh-thuh-loj-i-kuh l] /ˌɔr nə θəˈlɒdʒ ɪ kəl/ (Show IPA),
ornithologic, adjective
ornithologically, adverb
ornithologist, noun
unornithological, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ornithological
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The ornithological world is peopled by two classes of human beings.

    Birds of the Plains Douglas Dewar
  • I have never seen any mention of this in an ornithological treatise.

    Birds of the Plains Douglas Dewar
  • Thus, quite unconsciously, was an ornithological fact elucidated.

    Unexplored Spain Abel Chapman
  • I do not know how I came to see them, for I was not in an ornithological frame of mind.

    Riverby John Burroughs
  • In ornithological works it is described under the former of these names.

  • This story has found its way into some ornithological text-books.

  • They gave a sort of ornithological air to every errand I had to the barn.

    Birds and Poets John Burroughs
  • You must have a complete knowledge of ornithological anatomy.

    Wanderings in South America Charles Waterton
  • So, along with all the rest of the harmony-killers, I am saddled for life with this ornithological incubus.

    Bizarre Lawton Mackall
British Dictionary definitions for ornithological


the study of birds, including their physiology, classification, ecology, and behaviour
Derived Forms
ornithological (ˌɔːnɪθəˈlɒdʒɪkəl) adjective
ornithologically, adverb
ornithologist, noun
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 ornithological

1802, from ornithology + -ical. Related: Ornithologically.



1670s, from Modern Latin ornithologia (1590s); see ornitho- + -logy.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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ornithological in Science
The scientific study of birds.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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