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From Turkey. The guinea fowl (Numida meleagris), native to Africa, was imported to Europe by Turkey merchants. The larger northern American bird Meleagris gallopavo, thought to resemble the guinea fowl, was brought to Spain by conquistadors in 1523; from there it was introduced to northern Africa, at the time under Ottoman rule, and then via the Middle East back into Europe.



A roasted turkey at a restaurant in Singapore. Roasted turkey is traditionally served to celebrate Thanksgiving Day and Christmas.

turkey (plural turkeys)

  1. Either of two species of bird in the genus Meleagris with fan-shaped tails and wattled necks.
  2. (UK) The guinea fowl (Numida meleagris). [from c. 1600]
  3. (colloquial) A failure.
    That film was a turkey.
  4. (slang, usually mildly derogatory) A foolish or inept person.
    The turkey cut in front of me and then berated me for running into him.
  5. (bowling) An act of throwing three strikes in a row.


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