Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of Maw
Meaning of maw by Wiktionary Dictionary



    • IPA: /mɔː/, SAMPA: /mO:/
    • Rhymes: -ɔː

    Etymology 1

    Old English maga, from Germanic *magē-, from Indo-European *mak- ‘bag, belly’. Cognate with Dutch maag, German Magen, Swedish mage; and ( from Indo-European ) with Welsh megin ‘bellows’, Russian мошна ‘pocket, bag’, Lithuanian mãkas ‘purse’ .


    maw ( plural: maws )

    1. ( archaic ) the stomach, especially of an animal
      1667: So Death shall be deceav'd his glut, and with us two / Be forc'd to satisfie his Rav'nous Maw. — Milton, Paradise Lost, Book X
    2. the upper digestive tract ( where food enters the body ), especially the mouth and jaws of a ravenous creature .
      1818: To save poor lambkins from the eagle's maw — Keats, Endymion
    3. any great, insatiable or perilous opening .

    Etymology 2

    By shortening of mother


    maw ( plural: maws )

    1. ( dialect, colloquial ) Mother .


Definition of maw by GCIDE Dictionary


  1. Maw ( ma ), n. [See Mew a gull.] ( Zool. ) A gull.

  2. Maw, n. [OE. mawe, AS. maga stomach; akin to D. maag, OHG. mago, G. magen, Icel. magi, Sw. mage, Dan. mave. √103.]
    1. A stomach; the receptacle into which food is taken by swallowing; in birds, the craw; -- now used only of the lower animals, exept humorously or in contempt. Chaucer.

    Bellies and maws of living creatures. Bacon.

    2. Appetite; inclination. [Obs.]

    Unless you had more maw to do me good. Beau. & Fl.

    Fish maw. ( Zool. ) See under Fish.

  3. Maw, n. An old game at cards. Sir A. Weldon.