1. torticollis.
  2. a person having torticollis.
any of several small Old World climbing birds of the subfamily Jynginae, of the woodpecker family, noted for the peculiar habit of twisting the head and neck.

Origin of wryneck

First recorded in 1575–85; wry + neck
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for wryneck

Historical Examples of wryneck

  • The wryneck was thought to build the nest, and hatch and feed the young of the cuckoo.

    Welsh Folk-Lore

    Elias Owen

  • "That can be nothing else but a wryneck," said Jimmy, noticing its movement.

    The Swan and Her Crew

    George Christopher Davies

  • At most seasons of the year the wryneck is a remarkably silent bird.

  • Like very many other migrants, the wryneck does not appear to be powerful on the wing.

  • Other naturalists have found the wryneck in India equally tame.

British Dictionary definitions for wryneck



either of two cryptically coloured Old World woodpeckers, Jynx torquilla or J. ruficollis, which do not drum on trees
another name for torticollis
informal a person who has a twisted neck
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

wryneck in Medicine




The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.