Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

The Word of the Year is...

roadrunner

[rohd-ruhn-er] /ˈroʊdˌrʌn ər/
noun
1.
either of two large terrestrial cuckoos of the genus Geococcyx of arid regions of the western U.S., Mexico, and Central America, especially G. californianus (greater roadrunner)
Also called chaparral cock.
Origin of roadrunner
1855-1860
1855-60, Americanism; road + runner
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for road-runner
Historical Examples
  • Without a word they took hands and began to run along the trail after the road-runner.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • "It is something none of my people ever had," said the road-runner.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • "Sons eso," said the road-runner, and they settled themselves to listen.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • The road-runner balanced on his slender legs and cocked his head trailwise.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • The road-runner cocked his head on one side and observed the children, to see if they knew what this meant.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • "Come," said the road-runner, understanding that there would be no more to the Telling.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • Representation of the totemic chaparrel cock or road-runner.

  • One day I was talking to the ranchman when the road-runner appeared.

    A-Birding on a Bronco Florence A. Merriam
  • There are only a few animals, birds or insects who can kill a rattlesnake, and the road-runner does this about as neatly as any.

    Little Tales of The Desert Ethel Twycross Foster
  • "You can see by the frayed edges of his wing feathers that he has a long time for remembering," said the road-runner.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
British Dictionary definitions for road-runner

roadrunner

/ˈrəʊdˌrʌnə/
noun
1.
a terrestrial crested bird, Geococcyx californianus, of Central and S North America, having a streaked plumage and long tail: family Cuculidae (cuckoos) Also called chaparral cock
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for road-runner
n.

"long-tailed crested desert cuckoo," 1847, American English, from road (n.) + runner. Earliest references give the Mexican Spanish name for it as correcamino and the English name might be a translation of that. The Warner Bros. cartoon character dates to 1948.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for roadrunner

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for road

5
5
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for road-runner