[ hair-lip ]

  1. Usually Offensive. cleft lip.

Origin of harelip

First recorded in 1560–70; hare + lip

usage note For harelip

The term harelip is usually perceived as insulting because it compares the deformity in humans to the normal cleft lip of a hare. The accepted term for this medical condition is cleft lip.

Other words from harelip

  • harelipped, adjective

Words that may be confused with harelip

Words Nearby harelip

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use harelip in a sentence

  • Harwood might treat her, as she said, like a step-child with a harelip, but occasionally she made him sit up.

    A Hoosier Chronicle | Meredith Nicholson
  • Common illustrations of such deforming developmental accidents are harelip, cleft palate, and club foot.

    The Mother and Her Child | William S. Sadler
  • Jean was even more illfavored, having a scar across his mouth which gave him an artificial harelip.

  • There is just the possibility that a contrivance like our harelip pin with a figure of eight thread may be indicated.

  • He was a man with a harelip and a pure heart, and everybody said he was as true as steel.

    Some Rambling Notes of an Idle Excursion | Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

British Dictionary definitions for harelip


/ (ˈhɛəˌlɪp) /

  1. a congenital cleft or fissure in the midline of the upper lip, resembling the cleft upper lip of a hare, often occurring with cleft palate: Preferred form cleft lip

Derived forms of harelip

  • harelipped, adjective

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