- the mature female of any species of cattle, esp domesticated cattle
- the mature female of various other mammals, such as the elephant, whale, and seal
- (not in technical use) any domestic species of cattle
- informal a disagreeable woman
- Austral NZ slang something objectionable (esp in the phrase a fair cow)
WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2016
- Zoologythe mature female of cattle:The cows were kept for their milk.
- Animal Husbandry, Zoology, Informal TermsInformal. a domestic bovine of either sex and any age:Look at all the cows in the field.
- Zoologythe female of various other large animals, such as the elephant.
- Idiomshave a cow,[Slang.] to become very excited or angry; have a fit:told his teacher not to have a cow just because he forgot his homework.
cow2 /kaʊ/USA pronunciation v. [~ + object]
- to frighten with threats;
intimidate:I was cowed into agreeing with the boss.
n., pl. cows, (Archaic)kine.
- Zoologythe mature female of a bovine animal, esp. of the genus Bos.
- Zoologythe female of various other large animals, as the elephant or whale.
- Animal Husbandry, Zoology, Informal Terms[Informal.]a domestic bovine of either sex and any age.
- Slang Terms[Slang](disparaging and offensive). a large, obese, and slovenly woman.
- Slang Terms[Offensive.]a woman who has a large number of children or is frequently pregnant.
- Idiomstill or until the cows come home, for a long time;
forever:You can keep arguing till the cows come home, but I won't change my mind.
Middle English cou, Old English cū;
cognate with German Kuh, Dutch koe, Old Norse kȳr, Latin bōs, Greek boûs ox;
compare bovine, gaur
- to frighten with threats, violence, etc.;
- Old Norse kūga to oppress, cow; compare Danish kue to cow
- (transitive) to frighten or overawe, as with threats