Definition of poultry in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈpōltrē/


1Domestic fowl, such as chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese.
Example sentences
  • Specific arrangements may need to be put in place for poultry, horses, fish and exotic livestock.
  • The authorities are also conducting tests on dead domestic poultry found in another area of the capital.
  • Frozen turkeys or other poultry must always be thawed fully before cooking.
1.1The flesh of chickens and other domestic fowl as food: I haven’t eaten red meat for 19 years and poultry for 12 years raw or cooked meat and poultry anyone handling raw poultry should wash their hands thoroughly


Middle English: from Old French pouletrie, from poulet 'pullet'.

  • pony from mid 17th century:

    Different as they seem, pony and poultry (Middle English) have the same starting point. Latin pullus meant ‘young animal’, but it tended to be applied specifically to young horses and young chickens. The ‘young horse’ strand became Old French poulain ‘a foal’, and the diminutive form of this, poulenet, was adopted into Scots in the early 18th century as powny, coming into general English usage as pony. The ‘young chicken’ strand is the source of Old French pouletrie, from which we get poultry. See also monkey

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: poul·try

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.