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from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An enclosure or cage, as for poultry or small animals.
  • n. Slang An uncomfortably confined space.
  • n. Slang A prison.
  • transitive v. To confine in or as if in a coop. Often used with up. See Synonyms at enclose.
  • intransitive v. Informal To sleep or shirk in a parked patrol car while on duty. Used of a police officer.
  • idiom fly To make a getaway; escape.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A pen or enclosure for birds.
  • n. jail
  • v. To keep in a coop.
  • v. To shut up or confine in a narrow space; to cramp.
  • v. To work upon in the manner of a cooper.
  • n. Alternative spelling of co-op.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A barrel or cask for liquor.
  • n. An inclosure for keeping small animals; a pen; especially, a grated box for confining poultry.
  • n. A cart made close with boards; a tumbrel.
  • transitive v. To confine in a coop; hence, to shut up or confine in a narrow compass; to cramp; -- usually followed by up, sometimes by in.
  • transitive v. To work upon in the manner of a cooper.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A box, usually with grating or bars on one side or more, in which poultry are confined for fattening, transportation, exhibition, etc., or in which a hen with young chicks is shut for shelter and to keep her from straying.
  • n. A pen; an inclosed place for small animals, poultry, etc.
  • n. Any narrow, confining place of abode, as a house or room.
  • n. A cask; a barrel, keg, tub, pail, or other vessel formed of staves and hoops, for containing liquids.
  • n. A Dutch corn-measure equal to about one tenth of a Winchester peck.
  • n. A tumbrel or close cart.
  • To put into a coop; confine in a coop; cage; hence, to shut up or confine in a narrow compass: often followed by up: as, the poor of the city are cooped up in crowded tenements.
  • To make or repair (a vessel formed of staves and hoops); hoop (a vessel).
  • Synonyms To inclose, imprison, hem in, cage.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an enclosure made or wire or metal bars in which birds or animals can be kept
  • n. a farm building for housing poultry


Middle English coupe, possibly from Middle Dutch kūpe, basket, tub, from Germanic *kūpōn, possibly from Latin cūpa, cask.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English cupe, from Old English cȳpe ("basket, cask") (Wiktionary)
From cooperative, by shortening. (Wiktionary)



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