• synonyms


or vi·cu·ña

[vahy-koo-nuh, -kyoo-, vi-, vi-koo-nyuh]
  1. a wild South American ruminant, Vicugna vicugna, of the Andes, related to the guanaco but smaller, and yielding a soft, delicate wool: an endangered species, now increasing in numbers.
  2. a fabric of this wool or of some substitute, usually twilled and finished with a soft nap.
  3. a garment, especially an overcoat, of vicuna.
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Origin of vicuna

1585–95; < Spanish vicuña < Quechua wik’uña
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for vicuna

Historical Examples of vicuna

  • Alpaca, Vicuna and Llama wools are from different species of American goats.

    Vegetable Dyes

    Ethel M. Mairet

  • Vicuna—A soft twilled cloth similar to cheviot, made of the Andes vicuna, hence its name.

    Textiles and Clothing

    Kate Heintz Watson

  • Often I would spend hours in the wild solitudes hunting the vicuna and alpaca, or in some gloomy cañon communing with myself.

  • The wild lama was called huanacus, or guanaco; and the wild pacos, vicuna, or vigogne.

    Buffon's Natural History. Volume VIII (of 10)

    Georges Louis Leclerc de Buffon

  • For weaving, the most valuable pieces are mohair taken from the angora and vicuna.

British Dictionary definitions for vicuna


vicuna (vɪˈkjuːnə)

  1. a tawny-coloured cud-chewing Andean artiodactyl mammal, Vicugna vicugna, similar to the llama: family Camelidae
  2. the fine light cloth made from the wool obtained from this animal
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Word Origin for vicuña

C17: from Spanish vicuña, from Quechuan wikúña
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 vicuna


Peruvian ruminant, c.1600, from Spanish vicuña, from Quechua (Peru) wikuna, the native name of the animal.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper