• synonyms


[ smyoo ]
/ smyu /


a Eurasian duck, Mergus albellus, closely akin to mergansers: the male is white marked with black and gray.

Nearby words

smeltery, smelting, smersh, smetana, smethwick, smew, smicker, smidge, smidgen, smiercase, smilacaceous

Origin of smew

First recorded in 1665–75; origin uncertain Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for smew

  • Smew, smū, n. a bird of the family Anatid, in the same genus as the goosander and mergansers.

    Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary (part 4 of 4: S-Z and supplements)|Various
  • The Smew does not visit the land much, and even sleeps upon the water.

    British Sea Birds|Charles Dixon
  • During winter the Smew is gregarious, living in flocks of thirty or forty individuals, mostly immature.

    British Sea Birds|Charles Dixon

British Dictionary definitions for smew


/ (smjuː) /


a merganser, Mergus albellus, of N Europe and Asia, having a male plumage of white with black markings

Word Origin for smew

C17: of uncertain origin
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