tern


Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to tern: arctic tern, Common Tern

tern 1

 (tûrn)
n.
Any of various seabirds primarily of the genus Sterna found worldwide, typically smaller than a gull and having a forked tail.

[Of Scandinavian origin.]

tern 2

 (tûrn)
n.
1. Games A set of three, especially a combination of three numbers that wins a lottery.
2. A three-masted schooner.

[Middle English terne, from Old French, from ternes, from Latin ternās, accusative pl. of ternī, three each, from ter, thrice; see trei- in Indo-European roots.]

tern

(tɜːn)
n
(Animals) any aquatic bird of the subfamily Sterninae, having a forked tail, long narrow wings, a pointed bill, and a typically black-and-white plumage: family Laridae (gulls, etc), order Charadriiformes
[C18: from Old Norse therna; related to Norwegian terna, Swedish tärna]

tern

(tɜːn)
n
1. (Nautical Terms) a three-masted schooner
2. rare a group of three
[C14: from Old French terne, from Italian terno, from Latin ternī three each; related to Latin ter thrice, trēs three]

tern

(tɜrn)

n.
any of various web-footed aquatic birds of the subfamily Sterninae (family Laridae), resembling gulls, though typically smaller and slimmer.
[1670–80; < Dan terne or Norwegian terna, c. Old Norse therna]

Tern

 set of three; trio; triplet; a group of three stanzas in poetry, 1856.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.tern - small slender gull having narrow wings and a forked tailtern - small slender gull having narrow wings and a forked tail
larid - long-winged web-footed aquatic bird of the gull family
sea swallow, Sterna hirundo - common tern of Eurasia and America having white black and grey plumage
Translations

tern

[tɜːn] Ngolondrina f de mar
common terncharrán m común

tern

n (Zool) → Seeschwalbe f
References in classic literature ?
The booby lays her eggs on the bare rock; but the tern makes a very simple nest with seaweed.
Whether whales feed on them I do not know; but terns, cormorants, and immense herds of great unwieldy seals derive, on some parts of the coast, their chief sustenance from these swimming crabs.
Well, one day when I was not around, one of these people came along -- it was a she one, this time -- and told a tale of the usual pat- tern.
Once he was armed with a map of sooty tern migration, Huang could determine where the birds might run into trouble.
The birds return to the same small nesting area on the islands, which allows them to be recaught and the tags removed - including from the tern which recorded the trip of more than twice the circumference of the planet.
DARPA has been thinking about building a second Tern test vehicle for well over a year, said Dan Patt, DARPA program manager.
The tern - thought to be protecting its nest - even appeared to try and see what Richard was looking at by following the direction of his binoculars.
Based on Flexiant's 2014 statutory accounts, the assets acquired by Tern were valued at approximately GBP 20,000 (USD 26,882).
At Wales' only colony of Sandwich Terns, protected by North Wales Wildlife Trust wardens at Cemlyn Bay, 2,650 pairs fledged 1,200 young.
107 COMPARISON OF DIETS AND DIETARY SAMPLING METHODS FOR NESTING CALIFORNIA LEAST TERNS (STERNULA ANTILLARUM BROWNI) AT ALAMEDA POINT IN SAN FRANCISCO BAY, AND PURISIMA POINT ON THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA COAST
You can watch the activity at both the sand martin bank and the tern rafts from the comfort of the visitor centre.
Colony sites in the Gippsland Lakes area have become increasingly important in the maintenance of Little Tern and Fairy Tern populations in south-eastern Australia (Reside 2003).