• synonyms


noun, plural cas·so·war·ies.
  1. any of several large flightless, ratite birds of the genus Casuarius, of Australia, New Guinea, and adjacent islands, characterized by a bony casque on the front of the head.
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Origin of cassowary

1605–15; by uncertain mediation < Central Moluccan kasuwari, kasuwali
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cassowary

Historical Examples

  • In 1796 a mermaid was exhibited in Salem, and in 1800 a cassowary bird.

    The Olden Time Series, Vol. 4: Quaint and Curious Advertisements

    Henry M. Brooks

  • “The Barton Arms, Cassowary,” he ordered, and they set off at a lively clip.

    The Madness of May

    Meredith Nicholson

  • In the Cassowary the length of the large to the small intestine is 1:6.

  • But with the cassowary, the emu, or the apteryx matters are very different.

    Birds in Flight

    W. P. Pycraft

  • Often had the wish to possess one of Cassowary's masterpieces arisen.

    Tropic Days

    E. J. Banfield

British Dictionary definitions for cassowary


noun plural -waries
  1. any large flightless bird of the genus Casuarius, inhabiting forests in NE Australia, New Guinea, and adjacent islands, having a horny head crest, black plumage, and brightly coloured neck and wattles: order CasuariiformesSee also ratite
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Word Origin

C17: from Malay kěsuari
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 cassowary


1610s, via French or Dutch, from Malay kasuari.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper