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[grohs-beek] /ˈgroʊsˌbik/
any of various finches having a thick, conical bill.
Origin of grosbeak
1670-80; < French grosbec, literally, large beak Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for grosbeak
Historical Examples
  • As a matter of fact, the evening grosbeak goes to bed at dark, like all other respectable, reputable birds.

    Everyday Adventures Samuel Scoville
  • Only one species of grosbeak appears to be common in the Himalayas.

  • During bright moonshiny nights the grosbeak sings sweetly, but not loudly.

  • If I was to see the grosbeak and make sure of him, it must be done at once.

    A Florida Sketch-Book Bradford Torrey
  • I saw a grosbeak seize, shake, and devour a caterpillar about two inches in length.

  • Strange we did not see them before, but the explanation is the grosbeak was singing.

    Some Spring Days in Iowa Frederick John Lazell
  • The grosbeak sang on, a big Turnus butterfly sailed through the arbour and poised over the table.

    A Girl Of The Limberlost Gene Stratton Porter
  • Philip leaned back against the arbour, watching the grosbeak as it hunted food between a tomato vine and a day lily.

    A Girl Of The Limberlost Gene Stratton Porter
  • It is an easy matter, therefore, for the grosbeak to break off a single seed.

  • There are doubtless good reasons for the colouring of both the grosbeak and the oriole; what these reasons are we know not.

British Dictionary definitions for grosbeak


/ˈɡrəʊsˌbiːk; ˈɡrɒs-/
any of various finches, such as Pinicola enucleator (pine grosbeak), that have a massive powerful bill
cardinal grosbeak, any of various mostly tropical American buntings, such as the cardinal and pyrrhuloxia, the males of which have brightly coloured plumage
Word Origin
C17: from French grosbec, from Old French gros large, thick + becbeak1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for grosbeak

1670s, partial translation of French grosbec; see gross + beak.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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