English Dictionary

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secretary bird



  1. a large African long-legged diurnal bird of prey, Sagittarius serpentarius, having a crest and tail of long feathers and feeding chiefly on snakes: family Sagittariidae, order Falconiformes (hawks, falcons, etc)

Word Origin

C18: so called because its crest resembles a group of quill pens stuck behind the ear

Example Sentences Including 'secretary bird'

As for the old woman, he had seen her, like an old secretary bird going in and out, but he had scarcely noticed her, this terrible Nazi.
Doris Lessing THE SWEETEST DREAM (2001)


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