maw

1
[ maw ]
/ mɔ /

noun

the mouth, throat, or gullet of an animal, especially a carnivorous mammal.
the crop or craw of a fowl.
the stomach, especially that of an animal.
a cavernous opening that resembles the open jaws of an animal: the gaping maw of hell.
the symbolic or theoretical center of a voracious hunger or appetite of any kind: the ravenous maw of Death.

Nearby words

  1. maverick,
  2. mavis,
  3. mavors,
  4. mavourneen,
  5. mavun,
  6. mawger,
  7. mawkin,
  8. mawkish,
  9. mawkishly,
  10. mawlamyine

Origin of maw

1
before 900; Middle English mawe, Old English maga; cognate with Dutch maag, German Magen, Old Norse magi

Can be confusedmall maul maw

maw

2
[ maw ]
/ mɔ /

noun Informal.

Origin of maw

2
variant of ma

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for maw


British Dictionary definitions for maw

maw

/ (mɔː) /

noun

the mouth, throat, crop, or stomach of an animal, esp of a voracious animal
informal the mouth or stomach of a greedy person

Word Origin for maw

Old English maga; related to Middle Dutch maghe, Old Norse magi

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 maw

maw

n.

Old English maga "stomach" (of men and animals; in Modern English only of animals unless insultingly), from Proto-Germanic *magon "bag, stomach" (cf. Old Frisian maga, Old Norse magi, Danish mave, Middle Dutch maghe, Dutch maag, Old High German mago, German Magen "stomach"), from PIE *mak- "leather bag" (cf. Welsh megin "bellows," Lithuanian makas, Old Church Slavonic mošina "bag, pouch"). Meaning "throat, gullet" is from 1520s. Metaphoric of voracity from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper