[hel-i-kop-ter, hee-li-]
any of a class of heavier-than-air craft that are lifted and sustained in the air horizontally by rotating wings or blades turning on vertical axes through power supplied by an engine.
verb (used without object)
to fly in a helicopter.
verb (used with object)
to convey in a helicopter.

1885–90; < French hélicoptère. See helico-, -pter

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
helicopter (ˈhɛlɪˌkɒptə)
1.  See also autogiro an aircraft capable of hover, vertical flight, and horizontal flight in any direction. Most get all of their lift and propulsion from the rotation of overhead blades
2.  to transport (people or things) or (of people or things) to be transported by helicopter
[C19: from French hélicoptère, from helico- + Greek pteron wing]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1861, from Fr. hélicoptère "device for enabling airplanes to rise perpendicularly," thus "flying machine propelled by screws." The idea was to gain lift from spiral aerofoils, and it didn't work. Used by Jules Verne and the Wright Brothers, the word transferred to helicopters in the modern
sense when those were developed, 1920s. From Gk. helix (gen. helikos) "spiral" (see helix) + pteron "wing" (see petition). Nativized in Flemish as wentelwiek "with rotary vanes." Heliport is attested from 1948, with second element abstracted from airport.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for helicopters
Modern helicopters also typically use turbine engines to power the rotor.
The soldiers and marines answered by bringing in tanks and helicopters.
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