- any of several small to medium-sized Old World doves of the genus Streptopelia, especially S. turtur, of Europe, having a long, graduated tail: noted for its soft, cooing call.
- mourning dove.
- a sweetheart or beloved mate.
Origin of turtledove
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for turtledoves
Basil, cucumber, mangoes, the cooing of turtledoves on torrid afternoons, the screech of buses coming to a sudden halt.André Aciman: How I Write
November 28, 2012
She had much to say of dew and roses, turtledoves and the arrows of Cupid.Beauty and The Beast, and Tales From Home
Yet I will not answer for it that we shall spend our life like a pair of turtledoves.Life of Elie Metchnikoff, 1845-1916
They were turned to turtledoves, and flew away with drooping wings.
I have watched you, and I own a prettier pair of turtledoves I never saw.The Woman-Hater
Soon three turtledoves came from the sky flapping their wings and perched gently on the border of the pond.
- any of several Old World doves of the genus Streptopelia, having a brown plumage with speckled wings and a long dark tail
- a gentle or loving person
see turtle ²
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