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little egret

noun
1.
See under egret (def 1).

egret

[ee-grit, eg-rit, ee-gret, ee-gret] /ˈi grɪt, ˈɛg rɪt, iˈgrɛt, ˈi grɛt/
noun
1.
any of several usually white herons that grow long, graceful plumes during the breeding season, as Egretta garzetta (little egret) of the Old World.
2.
Origin
late Middle English
dialectal Old French
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English egret(e) < Anglo-French egret (compare Middle French égreste, aigrette), alteration (with -on exchanged for -et -et) of dialectal Old French aigron < Germanic; see heron
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for little egret

egret

/ˈiːɡrɪt/
noun
1.
any of various wading birds of the genera Egretta, Hydranassa, etc, that are similar to herons but usually have a white plumage and, in the breeding season, long feathery plumes: family Ardeidae, order Ciconiiformes See also aigrette
Word Origin
C15: from Old French aigrette, from Old Provençal aigreta, from aigron heron, of Germanic origin; compare Old High German heigaroheron
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for little egret

egret

n.

mid-14c., from Old French aigrette, from Old Provençal aigreta, diminutive of aigron "heron," perhaps of Germanic origin (cf. Old High German heigaro; see heron).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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6
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