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or wivern

[wahy-vern] /ˈwaɪ vərn/
noun, Heraldry.
a two-legged winged dragon having the hinder part of a serpent with a barbed tail.
Origin of wyvern
1600-10; alteration (with unexplained -n) of earlier wyver, Middle English < Anglo-French wivre (Old French guivre) < Latin vīpera viper Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for wyvern
Historical Examples
  • Thou wouldst he safest within the walls that shelter the treasure--with thy kinsfolk of the house of wyvern.

    The Lost Treasure of Trevlyn Evelyn Everett-Green
  • And now the wyvern swung it back and forth in a metronome sweep.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • She had liked Mr. wyvern from the first meeting with him, and a sense of trust had been nourished by each succeeding conversation.

    Demos George Gissing
  • They have these disks, one to a wyvern, and they control forces with them.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • Sinister: A wyvern erect on his tail erm., collared and chained as the griffin.

  • Thorvald and the wyvern were linked in a tight circuit which excluded Shann.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • A wyvern has a dragon's head and wings, with two eagle's legs, his tail is curled round itself and ends in a spear-point.

  • Yet he had been sent there to get the Throg free and out of wyvern territory.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • The wyvern city existed as a series of cell-like hollows in the interior of a rock-walled island.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • Then it occurred to her that Mr. wyvern was aristocratic in his views.

    Demos George Gissing
British Dictionary definitions for wyvern


a heraldic beast having a serpent's tail and a dragon's head and a body with wings and two legs
Word Origin
C17: variant of earlier wyver, from Old French, from Latin vīperaviper
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 wyvern

c.1600, formed (with excrescent -n) from Middle English wyver (c.1300), from Anglo-French wivre, from Old North French form of Old French guivre "snake," from Latin vipera "viper" (see viper). In heraldry, a winged dragon with eagle's feet and a serpent's barbed tail.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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