ovine

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

An ovine (Ovis aries, noun sense 1), in this case a Welsh Mountain sheep.

The adjective is borrowed from Late Latin ovīnus (ovine) + English -ine (suffix with the sense ‘of or relating to’ forming adjectives). Ovīnus is derived from Latin ovis (sheep) (ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *h₂ówis (sheep), possibly from *h₂ew- (to clothe oneself, dress; to be dressed) in the sense of something that provides woollen clothing) + -īnus (suffix with the sense ‘of or relating to’ forming adjectives).[1]

The noun is derived from the adjective.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ovine (comparative more ovine, superlative most ovine)

  1. (comparable) Of, being, pertaining to, or resembling a sheep; also, (not comparable) of an animal: from the genus Ovis.
    Synonyms: sheepish, sheeplike, sheepy
    Antonym: nonovine
    • 1868, Edward C[ator] Seaton, “Of Pocks in Other Animals which have been Considered Analogous to Cow-pox and Horse-pox”, in A Handbook of Vaccination, Philadelphia, Pa.: J[oshua] B[allinger] Lippincott & Co., OCLC 8940474, paragraph 19 (Ovination of the Human Subject), page 46:
      [] Dr. [Mauro] Legni reported to him a month afterward that the ovination had been successful, and that no marked differences had been observable between the vesicles produced by the ovine and those produced by the vaccine lymph. Dr. Legni added, that he had continued to propagate the ovine lymph on children.
    • 1896, H[erbert] G[eorge] Wells, chapter 16, in The Island of Doctor Moreau (Heinemann’s Colonial Library of Popular Fiction; 52), London: William Heinemann, OCLC 892648905; republished as The Island of Doctor Moreau: A Possibility, New York, N.Y.: Stone & Kimball, 1896, OCLC 660486:
      Satyr was a gleam of classical ​memory on the part of Moreau,—his face ovine in expression, like the coarser Hebrew type; his voice a harsh bleat
    • 1992, Colin Tudge, “The Frozen Zoo?”, in Last Animals at the Zoo: How Mass Extinction Can be Stopped, Washington, D.C.; Covelo, Calif.: Island Press, →ISBN, page 175:
      Thus, in general, cattle sperm are reasonably robust, but sheep much less so. Antelope, evolutionarily speaking, are somewhere between cattle and sheep: some are cattle-like, and some are more ovine.
    • 2005, “Meat”, in OECD–FAO Agricultural Outlook 2005–2014, Paris: OECD Publishing; Food and Agriculture Organization, →ISBN, page 77:
      Ovine meat currently averages 25% of meat production in these countries, but over the projections period, the strongest production gains are expected in the poultry meat sector, contributing 41% to their meat output gains.
  2. (comparable, figuratively) Resembling a sheep in character; acquiescent, easily influenced, passive, or willing to follow a leader blindly.
    Synonym: sheeplike

Coordinate terms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

See also[edit]

Noun[edit]

ovine (plural ovines)

  1. An animal from the genus Ovis; a sheep.
  2. (figuratively) A person regarded as resembling a sheep in character; one who is acquiescent, easily influenced, passive, or willing to follow a leader blindly; a sheep.
    • 1944, [George] Bernard Shaw, “Political Summary”, in Everybody’s Political What’s What?, London: Constable and Company, OCLC 433795408, page 353:
      At present, municipal councillors play at party politics by organizing the ovine members who do not know how to vote until a Party Whip tells them, and opposing independent candidates at the elections. The remedy for this is the exclusion of ovines from the municipal panel.

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ ovine, adj. and n.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2019; “ovine, adj.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


French[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ovine

  1. feminine singular of ovin

Anagrams[edit]


Italian[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ovine

  1. feminine plural of ovino

Anagrams[edit]


Latin[edit]

Adjective[edit]

ovīne

  1. vocative masculine singular of ovīnus