- a person who eats human flesh, especially for magical or religious purposes, as among certain tribal peoples.
- any animal that eats its own kind.
- pertaining to or characteristic of a cannibal.
- given to cannibalism.
Origin of cannibal
Related Words for cannibalsavage, ogre, primitive, brute, aborigine, ruffian, anthropophagite, ogress, head-hunter
Examples from the Web for cannibal
Contemporary Examples of cannibal
Amirpour's next project is one she bills as a “Texas cannibal love story.”The Punk Behind Iran's Only Vampire Spaghetti Western-Style Love Story
November 21, 2014
Fellow cops at the 26th Precinct in upper Manhattan wondered if they really had been working with a cannibal.Why NYPD Couldn’t Cook The ‘Cannibal Cop’
July 2, 2014
The headline: "Three Englishmen Saved From Boiling Pot By Cannibal Chief, Who Was Friend at Oxford."The Story Behind The World’s Greatest Headline
January 21, 2014
And cruder devices certainly deepen the effect of a name; Caliban is a rough anagram of “cannibal,” and Cassio contains an “ass.”What’s in a Name? Writers and Their Anthroponymy
February 28, 2013
The Cannibal Cop may end up being saved by his own sick and shameful words.Cannibal Cop May Be Saved by His Own Words
February 28, 2013
Historical Examples of cannibal
"But how came you to live among these cannibal demons," asked Raiko.Japanese Fairy World
William Elliot Griffis
"Or 'Youmale,' the Caribbean cannibal of the lake of the Caimans," continued a third.
It may come from a rival—from the buccaneer, the filibuster, or the cannibal.
"Nay, elder, I am not all out a cannibal and ogre," replied the captain.Standish of Standish
Jane G. Austin
The Cosmos as such is cannibal; as old Time ate his children.A Miscellany of Men
G. K. Chesterton
- a person who eats the flesh of other human beings
- (as modifier)cannibal tribes
- an animal that feeds on the flesh of others of its kind
Word Origin for cannibal
"human that eats human flesh," 1550s, from Spanish canibal, caribal "a savage, cannibal," from Caniba, Christopher Columbus' rendition of the Caribs' name for themselves (see Caribbean). The natives were believed to be anthropophagites. Columbus, seeking evidence that he was in Asia, thought the name meant the natives were subjects of the Great Khan. Shakespeare's Caliban (in "The Tempest") is from a version of this word, with -n- and -l- interchanged, found in Hakluyt's "Voyages" (1599). The Spanish word had reached French by 1515. Used of animals from 1796. An Old English word for "cannibal" was selfæta.