From Middle English merle, from Old French merle (French merle), from Latin merula (“blackbird”) (whence the directly borrowed Middle English merule, and compare the taxonomic name Turdus merula), from Proto-Indo-European *h₂mes- (“black, blackbird”). Compare Breton moualch (“ouzel”), Welsh mwyalch (“blackbird, thrush”). Distantly related to the synonymous ouzel.
merle (plural merles)
- A type of mottled coloration on dogs.
- A dog having this coloration.
Inherited from Latin merula, the word for the male blackbird being mostly female until the 16th century. Probable influence of the Late Latin masculine form merulus (compare Italian merlo, Spanish mirlo).
- (blackbird): (Louisiana) tchoque
- plural of
- Alternative form of