noun, plural zoos.
Also called zoological garden. a parklike area in which live animals are kept in cages or large enclosures for public exhibition.
Informal. a place, activity, or group marked by chaos or unrestrained behavior.

1840–50; first two syllables of zoological garden taken as one syllable

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a combining form meaning “living being,” “animal,” used in the formation of compound words: zoometry; zooplankton.
Also, especially before a vowel, zo-.

combining form representing Greek zôion animal

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
zoo (zuː)
n , pl zoos
Formal term: zoological garden a place where live animals are kept, studied, bred, and exhibited to the public
[C19: shortened from zoological gardens (originally applied to those in London)]

zoo- or (before a vowel) zo-
combining form
indicating animals: zooplankton
[from Greek zōion animal]
zo- or (before a vowel) zo-
combining form
[from Greek zōion animal]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1847, short for Zoological Gardens of the London Zoological Society, established 1828 in Regent's Park to house the society's collection of wild animals. From comb. form of Gk. zoion "an animal," lit. "a living being," from PIE base *gwei- "to live, life" (cf. Gk. bios "life," O.E. cwicu "living;"
see bio-). Slang meaning "crowded and chaotic place" first recorded 1935.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

zoo- or zo-
Animal; animal kingdom: zoonosis.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Computing Dictionary

Zoo definition

Berkeley Yacc

zoo definition

tool, file format
A data compression program and format by Rahul Dhesi. Zoo is reported to use the same Lempel Ziv algorithm as LHA. It is available for many platforms and source is available. .zoo archives are handled by many other PC archiving programs.
Version 2.10 was released in 1989. Search the web for zoo210 to obtain an executable.
Description (http://sources.isc.org/archiver/zoo2.txt).
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
zoological garden
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


see it's a zoo.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences for zoo
Their large size and fearsome reputation makes them popular zoo exhibits.
The hangars from the old airport are still in use as the elephant enclosure for
  the zoo.
It is a green paradise in the middle of the city, and it contains a small zoo.
When zoo scientists thought they had a new species they brought in dr.
Idioms & Phrases
Images for zoo
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