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parakeet

[par-uh-keet]
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noun
  1. any of numerous small, slender parrots, usually having a long, pointed, graduated tail, often kept as pets and noted for the ability to mimic speech: several species are endangered.
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Also paraquet, paroquet, parrakeet, parroket, parroquet.

Origin of parakeet

1575–85; < Middle French paroquet parrot, apparently originally a diminutive of P(i)errot, diminutive of Pierre Peter, as a name for a parrot; the modern form and its earlier variants have been influenced by Italian parrocchetto and Spanish periquito (both ultimately < MF)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for parakeet

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Mr. Parakeet was gasping slowly and gazing round in a circle.

    The Einstein See-Saw

    Miles John Breuer

  • He smirked and made a face at the parakeet who did its best to smirk back.

    Mr. Wicker's Window

    Carley Dawson

  • Except for the two men and the parakeet, the Vulture was deserted.

    Mr. Wicker's Window

    Carley Dawson

  • As a parakeet, he was chained by the tough silk cord that bound his bird's foot.

    Mr. Wicker's Window

    Carley Dawson

  • My dear Cleek, couldn't a parakeet be made to swallow a pearl?


British Dictionary definitions for parakeet

parakeet

parrakeet

noun
  1. any of numerous small usually brightly coloured long-tailed parrots, such as Psittacula krameri (ring-necked parakeet), of Africa
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Word Origin

C16: from Spanish periquito and Old French paroquet parrot, of uncertain origin
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

Word Origin and History for parakeet

n.

1620s, from Spanish perquito; earlier English form parroket (1580s) is from Middle French paroquet, from Old French paroquet (14c.), which is said by etymologists of French to be from Italian parrocchetto, literally "little priest," from parroco "parish priest," from Church Latin parochus (see parish), or parrucchetto, diminutive of parrucca "peruke, periwig," in reference to the head plumage.

The Spanish form, meanwhile, is sometimes said to be a diminutive of Perico, familiar form of Pedro "Peter," and the Old French word is likewise perhaps from or influenced by a diminutive of Pierre "Peter." The relations of the Spanish and Italian forms, and the influence of folk etymology on either or both, are uncertain.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper