Definition of curlew in English:


Line breaks: cur¦lew
Pronunciation: /ˈkəːl(j)uː

noun (plural same or curlews)

A large wading bird of the sandpiper family, with a long downcurved bill, brown streaked plumage, and frequently a distinctive ascending two-note call. See also stone curlew.
  • Genus Numenius, family Scolopacidae: several species, in particular N. arquata of Eurasia
More example sentences
  • In the mud flats of the Bay of Fundy, you'll see large roosts of shorebirds - plovers, yellowlegs, godwits, curlews, and phalaropes - at high tide.
  • Other migratory birds observed in the shallow waters were bar headed geese, open bill storks, northern pintails, gadwalls, curlews, black tailed godwits, spoonbills, green shanks, red shanks and so on.
  • So why cannot hen harriers, sparrowhawks and goshawks be controlled to protect lapwings, curlews, golden plovers and, yes, pheasants and grouse?


Middle English: from Old French courlieu, alteration (by association with courliu 'courier', from courre 'run' + lieu 'place') of imitative courlis.

Definition of curlew in: