mew (n.1)

"seagull," Old English mæw, from Proto-Germanic *maigwis (source also of Old Saxon mew, Frisian meau, Middle Dutch and Middle Low German mewe, Dutch meeuw "gull"), imitative of its cry. Old French moue (Modern French mouette) and Lithuanian mevas are Germanic loan-words.

mew (n.2)

"cage," c. 1300, from Old French mue "cage for hawks, especially when molting," from muer "to molt," from Latin mutare "to change" (from PIE root *mei- (1) "to change").

mew (v.)

"make a sound like a cat," early 14c., mewen, of imitative origin (compare German miauen, French miauler, Italian miagolare, Spanish maullar, and see meow). Related: Mewed; mewing. As a noun from 1590s.

Share