Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Beak'
- beaklike mouth of animals other than birds (e.g., turtles)
- horny projecting mouth of a bird [syn: bill, neb, nib, pecker]
- informal terms for the nose [syn: honker, hooter, nozzle, snoot, snout, schnozzle, schnoz] v : hit lightly with a picking motion [syn: peck, pick]
- Beak \Beak\ (b[=e]k), n. [OE. bek, F. bec, fr. Celtic; cf. Gael.
& Ir. bac, bacc, hook, W. bach.]
- (Zo["o]l.) (a) The bill or nib of a bird, consisting of a horny sheath, covering the jaws. The form varied much according to the food and habits of the bird, and is largely used in the classification of birds. (b) A similar bill in other animals, as the turtles. (c) The long projecting sucking mouth of some insects, and other invertebrates, as in the Hemiptera. (d) The upper or projecting part of the shell, near the hinge of a bivalve. (e) The prolongation of certain univalve shells containing the canal.
- Anything projecting or ending in a point, like a beak, as a promontory of land. --Carew.
- (Antiq.) A beam, shod or armed at the end with a metal head or point, and projecting from the prow of an ancient galley, in order to pierce the vessel of an enemy; a beakhead.
- (Naut.) That part of a ship, before the forecastle, which is fastened to the stem, and supported by the main knee.
- (Arch.) A continuous slight projection ending in an arris or narrow fillet; that part of a drip from which the water is thrown off.
- (Bot.) Any process somewhat like the beak of a bird, terminating the fruit or other parts of a plant.
- (Far.) A toe clip. See Clip, n. (Far.).
- A magistrate or policeman. [Slang, Eng.]
- Clip \Clip\, n.
- An embrace. --Sir P. Sidney.
- A cutting; a shearing.
Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Beak'
The beak, bill or rostrum is an external anatomical structure of birds which is used for eating and for grooming, manipulating objects, killing prey, probing for food, courtship and feeding young. The term beak is also used to refer to a similar mouthpart in some Ornithischian dinosaurs, monotremes, cephalopods, cetaceans, pufferfishes, turtles, Anuran tadpoles and sirens.
The terms 'beak' and 'bill' are interchangeable, although the former was formerly restricted to hooked beaks of birds of prey and parrots.
Beaks vary significantly in size and shape from species to species. The beak is composed of an upper jaw, called the maxilla, and a lower jaw, called the mandible. The jaw is made of bone, typically hollow or porous to reduce weight for flying. The outside surface of the beak is covered by a thin horny sheath of keratin called the rhamphotheca. Between the hard outer layer and the bone is a vascular layer containing blood vessels and nerve endings. The rhamphotheca can include knob, which is found above the beak of some swans, such as the Mute Swan, and some domesticated Chinese geese (pictured).[See more about Beak at Dictionary 3.0 Encyclopedia]
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