Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


Plural of wolf.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


the plural of wolf
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014



n., pl. wolves (wo͝olvz),
v. n.
1. any of several carnivorous mammals of the genus Canus, esp. the gray wolf, Canis lupus, formerly common throughout the Northern Hemisphere.
2. any of several other large canids, as the maned wolf.
3. the fur of such an animal.
4. any of various unrelated wolflike animals, as the thylacine.
5. a cruelly rapacious person.
6. a man who makes amorous advances to many women.
7. a pitch of unstable quality or loudness sometimes occurring in a bowed musical instrument.
8. to devour voraciously (often fol. by down): to wolf one's food.
9. to hunt for wolves.
1. cry wolf, to give a false alarm.
2. keep the wolf from the door, to avert poverty or starvation.
3. wolf in sheep's clothing, a person who conceals evil beneath an innocent exterior.
[before 900; Middle English; Old English wulf, c. Old Saxon wulf, Old High German wolf, Old Norse ulfr, Gothic wulfs, Polish wilk, Skt vṛka; akin to Latin lupus, Greek lýkos]
wolf′like`, adj.



1. Friedrich August, 1759–1824, German classical scholar.
2. Hugo, 1860–1903, Austrian composer.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


See also animals.

1. a person suffering from lycanthropy.
2. a werewolf or alien spirit in the form of a bloodthirsty wolf.
3. a person reputed to be able to change himself or another person into a wolf.
1. Psychiatry. Also called lycomania. a kind of insanity in which the patient believes himself to be a beast, especially a wolf.
2. the supposed or fabled assumption of the form of a wolf by a human being. — lycanthropic, adj.
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
He knew that young and old wolves were there, that the hounds had separated into two packs, that somewhere a wolf was being chased, and that something had gone wrong.
"It is time to hunt again." He was going to spring down hill when a little shadow with a bushy tail crossed the threshold and whined: "Good luck go with you, O Chief of the Wolves. And good luck and strong white teeth go with noble children that they may never forget the hungry in this world."
It was the jackal--Tabaqui, the Dish-licker--and the wolves of India despise Tabaqui because he runs about making mischief, and telling tales, and eating rags and pieces of leather from the village rubbish-heaps.
He had almost forgotten the days when he won Mother Wolf in fair fight from five other wolves, when she ran in the Pack and was not called The Demon for compliment's sake.
I lifted by head over the brink of the rock and looked, and I tell you, Umslopogaas, my blood ran cold and my heart turned to water, for there, before the cave, rolled wolves, many and great.
"Thus I thought in my heart; then, tarrying not, lest fear should come upon me again, I swung up the Watcher, and crying aloud the war-cry of the Halakazi, I sprang over the brink of the rock and rushed upon the wolves. They, too, sprang up and stood howling, with bristling hides and fiery eyes, and the smell of them came into my nostrils.
Near to her was another wolf--he was a dog--old and black, bigger than any I have seen, a very father of wolves, and all his head and flanks were streaked with grey.
Just to give you an idea of the immense variety of the Jungle Law, I have translated into verse (Baloo always recited them in a sort of sing-song) a few of the laws that apply to the wolves. There are, of course, hundreds and hundreds more, but these will do for specimens of the simpler rulings.
Then, approaching at right angles to the trail and cutting off his retreat they saw a dozen wolves, lean and grey, bounding across the snow.
With his rifle, in the broad daylight, it might be possible for him to awe the wolves and save the dog.
The eldest answered quickly, 'Let him drive all the wolves of the kingdom on to this hill before to-morrow night.
'But how in the world,' he added, 'am I to collect all the wolves of the kingdom on to that hill over there?'