[ tal-uhn ]
See synonyms for: talontalons on Thesaurus.com

  1. a claw, especially of a bird of prey.

  2. the shoulder on the bolt of a lock against which the key presses in sliding the bolt.

  1. Cards. the cards left over after the deal; stock.

Origin of talon

1350–1400; Middle English taloun<Anglo-French; Old French talon<Vulgar Latin *tālōn-, stem of *tālō, for Latin tālus heel

Other words from talon

  • taloned, adjective
  • un·tal·oned, adjective

Words Nearby talon

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use talon in a sentence

  • With his talon-like hands he began clawing at the sick man, who was twisting and tossing on his couch, as though with convulsions.

  • No sooner had Don Luis entered the hall than a hand, or rather a talon, seized him by the right arm.

    Pepita Ximenez | Juan Valera
  • I told them that if we only gave you a chance you would be a perfect talon rouge.

    The American | Henry James
  • All night he labored, beak and talon, until the nest was ready.

    The Curious Book of Birds | Abbie Farwell Brown
  • As epigrams well enough, Mr. talon; but perhaps the simple truth is, that I do not love her ladyship.

    The Harlequinade | Dion Clayton Calthrop

British Dictionary definitions for talon


/ (ˈtælən) /

  1. a sharply hooked claw, esp of a bird of prey

  2. anything resembling a bird's claw

  1. the part of a lock that the key presses on when it is turned

  2. cards the pile of cards left after the deal

  3. architect another name for ogee

  4. stock exchange a printed slip attached to some bearer bonds to enable the holder to apply for a new sheet of coupons

Origin of talon

C14: from Old French: heel, from Latin tālus heel

Derived forms of talon

  • taloned, adjective

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

Scientific definitions for talon


[ tălən ]

  1. One of the sharp, curved claws on a limb of a bird or other animal such as a lizard, used for seizing and tearing prey. Most talons are situated at the ends of digits.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.