teddy bear



a toy bear, especially a stuffed one.

Origin of teddy bear

1905–10, Americanism; after Theodore Roosevelt, called Teddy, who is said to have saved the life of a bear cub while hunting
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for teddy bear

Historical Examples of teddy bear

  • Over the second Teddy-bear they became friendly, over the third intimate.

    The Man Upstairs

    P. G. Wodehouse

  • Here was maternity, parenthood, another breed than that of the Teddy-bear's hot, pink nursery.

    Jane Journeys On

    Ruth Comfort Mitchell

  • For suddenly the little girl threw the Teddy-bear and all the six dolls into the puddle.

    Maida's Little Shop

    Inez Haynes Irwin

  • Suddenly she came out of one of the yards, clasping a Teddy-bear and a whole family of dolls in her fat arms.

    Maida's Little Shop

    Inez Haynes Irwin

  • He had his hat crumpled in one hand, and his teddy-bear in the other, and his face was alive with excitement.

    Dennison Grant

    Robert Stead

British Dictionary definitions for teddy bear

teddy bear


a stuffed toy bear made from soft or fluffy materialOften shortened to: teddy

Word Origin for teddy bear

C20: from Teddy, from Theodore, after Theodore Roosevelt, who was well known as a hunter of bears
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 teddy bear

1906, named for U.S. president Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt, a noted big-game hunter, whose conservationist fervor inspired a comic illustrated poem in the "New York Times" of Jan. 7, 1906, about two bears named Teddy, whose names were transferred to two bears presented to the Bronx Zoo that year. The name was picked up by toy dealers in 1907 for a line of "Roosevelt bears" imported from Germany. Meaning "big, lovable person" first attested 1957, from the song popularized by Elvis Presley.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper