One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounPlural kiwis, Plural Kiwis
1A flightless New Zealand bird with hairlike feathers, having a long downcurved bill with sensitive nostrils at the tip.
Family Apterygidae and genus Apteryx: three species
- ‘I find it amusing that the country's air force logo is a kiwi, a bird that can't even fly.’
- ‘However, after nine months - when they weigh about 1 kg - most kiwis can fight off anything but a dog, and generally live for another 40 years.’
- ‘The kiwi, a flightless nocturnal bird unique to New Zealand, is the symbol for everything from New Zealand.’
- ‘The Taranaki Kiwi Trust has released five kiwi into the park already with a further nine on the way - positive action that may halt the kiwi's decline into extinction.’
- ‘At one exciting moment, several kiwis were calling loudly only a few feet above us on a hillside, but they never came into view.’
- ‘Before the captive kiwi were released the iconic birds had been extinct in the southern North Island for well over a century.’
2informal A New Zealander.
- ‘Its been extraordinary the way the Kiwis have pulled together and raised this money.’
- ‘She fell in love with a Kiwi martial art teacher and simply took off with him.’
- ‘As a Kiwi it's hard to admit, but the Aussies are pretty sharp at this game, which is even more reason to dislike them.’
- ‘I watched the Kiwis play Australia earlier this month and thought they should have won.’
- ‘We had some philosophical disagreements, but he was a good Kiwi and a good New Zealander.’
- ‘What do tax cuts mean for ordinary Kiwis on middle and low incomes?’
- ‘The burden continues to fall on hard-working Kiwis paying that top tax rate.’
- ‘Most Kiwis will have spent some of their summer sitting in a car behind a truck on a stretch of open road.’
- ‘One thing I've really realised upon spending a bit of time around Kiwis again is that New Zealand English really is different from UK English.’
- ‘The Kiwis do security patrols around the base perimeter and man the watchtower on a roster system.’
- ‘The achievements are ones that we can all be proud of as fellow Kiwis.’
- ‘The conversation reminds me of the Kiwis I stayed with at Phillip Island last month.’
- ‘Sole, a Kiwi with an Italian mother and a Scottish father, has been excellent this championship.’
- ‘So not only have I finally come across a few Kiwis after all this time here, but they are also surfers!’
- ‘I'd classify the Kiwis as honest, basically, though there are always exceptions.’
- ‘The next match of the series takes place at South Leeds Stadium on Friday when the Kiwis meet Australia.’
- ‘The fact that so many Kiwis got behind Jeff and voted should in itself show what he could've done for the show.’
- ‘Here in Australia we allow Kiwis to enter anytime they like and to work in our great country.’
- ‘The average Australian earns about $120 a week more than the average Kiwi.’
- ‘The Dominion Post reports that Kiwis are indecisive on polling day because 30 percent of us make up our minds in the last months of an election (and 16% on the day itself).’
Mid 19th century: from Maori.
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