• synonyms


[gal-uh-nool, -nyool]
See more synonyms for gallinule on Thesaurus.com
  1. any aquatic bird of the family Rallidae, having elongated, webless toes.
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Origin of gallinule

1770–80; < New Latin Gallinula a genus name, Late Latin gallīnula chicken, equivalent to Latin gallīn(a) hen + -ula -ule
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gallinule

Historical Examples

  • Seale (1901:31) found the Gallinule to be abundant at Guam in marshes and taro patches.

    The Avifauna of Micronesia, Volume 3

    Rollin H. Baker

  • Gallinule, gal′i-nūl, n. a genus of aquatic birds closely allied to the coots, of which the common water-hen is a species.

  • Gallinule and cockatoos were in large flocks feeding on the grass seeds, which were now nearly ripe.

  • The Florida gallinule is in general pretty silent, I think; but he has a noisy season; then he is indeed noisy enough.

    A Florida Sketch-Book

    Bradford Torrey

  • A good many of my jaunts took me past the gallinule swamp before mentioned, and almost always I stopped and went near.

    A Florida Sketch-Book

    Bradford Torrey

British Dictionary definitions for gallinule


  1. any of various aquatic birds of the genera Porphyrio and Porphyrula, typically having a dark plumage, red bill, and a red shield above the bill: family Rallidae (rails)
  2. common gallinule the US name for moorhen (def. 1)
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Word Origin

C18: from New Latin Gallīnula genus name, from Late Latin: pullet, chicken, from Latin gallīna hen
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