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See more synonyms for covey on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural cov·eys.
  1. a brood or small flock of partridges or similar birds.
  2. a group, set, or company.
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Origin of covey

1400–50; Middle English, variant of covee < Anglo-French, Old French, noun use of feminine of past participle of cover to hatch < Latin cubāre to lie down; cf. couvade, concubine
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

bunch, brood, herd

Examples from the Web for covey

Historical Examples

  • He started, his dreams gone from him like a covey of frightened quail.

    The Duke Of Chimney Butte

    G. W. Ogden

  • Passing now through woods they started a covey of partridges.

    The Long Roll

    Mary Johnston

  • However, deep in the woods they came upon a covey of partridges.

    The Rover Boys on a Hunt

    Arthur M. Winfield (Edward Stratemeyer)

  • On my return, I told Mr. Covey what had happened, and how it happened.

  • Mr. Covey was one of the few slaveholders who could and did work with his hands.

British Dictionary definitions for covey


  1. a small flock of grouse or partridge
  2. a small group, as of people
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Word Origin

C14: from Old French covee, from cover to sit on, hatch; see couvade
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 covey


mid-14c., "brood of partridges," from Middle French covée "brood" (Modern French couvée), from Gallo-Romance *cubata, literally "hatchling," from past participle stem of Latin cubare "to sit, incubate, hatch" (see incubation).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper