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See more synonyms for ox on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural ox·en for 1, 2, ox·es for 3.
  1. the adult castrated male of the genus Bos, used chiefly as a draft animal.
  2. any member of the bovine family.
  3. Informal. a clumsy, stupid fellow.
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Origin of ox

before 900; Middle English oxe, Old English oxa; cognate with Old Frisian oxa, Old Saxon, Old High German ohso, Old Norse uxi, oxi; akin to Welsh ych
Related formsox·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for oxes

clod, dunce, imbecile, clown, klutz, yokel, sap, dolt, half-wit, bumpkin, idiot, boor, blunderer, brute, moron, nincompoop, fool, goon, beast, hayseed

Examples from the Web for oxes

Historical Examples of oxes

  • She plowed two oxes, an' if'en yo' has eber been around a steer yo' knows what aggravatin' things dey is.

    Slave Narratives: a Folk History of Slavery in the United States


  • Then they shewed him the Oxes goad wherewith Shamger slew six hundred men.

British Dictionary definitions for oxes


noun plural oxen (ˈɒksən)
  1. an adult castrated male of any domesticated species of cattle, esp Bos taurus, used for draught work and meat
  2. any bovine mammal, esp any of the domestic cattle
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Word Origin for ox

Old English oxa; related to Old Saxon, Old High German ohso, Old Norse oxi
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 oxes



Old English oxa "ox" (plural oxan), from Proto-Germanic *ukhson (cf. Old Norse oxi, Old Frisian oxa, Middle Dutch osse, Old Saxon, Old High German ohso, German Ochse, Gothic auhsa), from PIE *uks-en- "male animal," (cf. Welsh ych "ox," Middle Irish oss "stag," Sanskrit uksa, Avestan uxshan- "ox, bull"), said to be from root *uks- "to sprinkle," related to *ugw- "wet, moist." The animal word, then, is literally "besprinkler."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper