• synonyms


  1. any of several small Old World birds, especially of the genus Saxicola, as S. torquata.
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Origin of stonechat

1775–85; stone + chat, so called from its warning cry which sounds like a clash of stones
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for stonechat

Historical Examples

  • Only once have I seen a stonechat in the neighbourhood of this garden.

    In a Cheshire Garden

    Geoffrey Egerton-Warburton

  • It is difficult to put oneself in the place of the Stonechat or of the Whinchat.

    Territory in Bird Life

    H. Eliot Howard

  • This was on April 23rd, and there were four eggs of the Stonechat.

  • But the rock stood still, and a stonechat went and perched on it.

  • That delightful, restless little bird, the stonechat, is a near relation of the wheatear.

    Birds in Flight

    W. P. Pycraft

British Dictionary definitions for stonechat


  1. an Old World songbird, Saxicola torquata, having a black plumage with a reddish-brown breast: subfamily Turdinae (thrushes)
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Word Origin

C18: so called from its cry, which sounds like clattering pebbles
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