noun, plural os·preys.

Also called fish hawk. a large hawk, Pandion haliaetus, that feeds on fish.
a plume for trimming hats.

Nearby words

  1. oso,
  2. osorno,
  3. osp,
  4. osphresis,
  5. osphretic,
  6. osrd,
  7. oss,
  8. ossa,
  9. ossature,
  10. ossein

Origin of osprey

1425–75; late Middle English ospray(e) ≪ Latin ossifraga ossifrage; compare Middle French orfraie, offraie, Old French ospres

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

Examples from the Web for osprey

British Dictionary definitions for osprey



a large broad-winged fish-eating diurnal bird of prey, Pandion haliaetus, with a dark back and whitish head and underparts: family PandioridaeOften called (US and Canadian): fish hawk
any of the feathers of various other birds, used esp as trimming for hats

Word Origin for osprey

C15: from Old French ospres, apparently from Latin ossifraga, literally: bone-breaker, from os bone + frangere to break

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 osprey



fishing hawk, mid-15c., from Anglo-French ospriet, from Medieval Latin avis prede "bird of prey," from Latin avis praedæ, a generic term apparently confused with this specific bird in Old French on its similarity to ossifrage.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper