Definition of mink in English:



  • 1A small semiaquatic stoat-like carnivore native to North America and Eurasia. The American mink is widely farmed for its fur, resulting in it becoming naturalized in many parts of Europe.

    • ‘Among the creatures expected to blossom as a result would be the tiny water vole, whose populations were decimated by the introduction of the mink from North America.’
    • ‘Of these animals, only weasels, otters and mink remain widespread, and the weasel is the only one that is still abundant.’
    • ‘The Guardian reported that the mink are an American variety not native to Spain and officials were concerned that the mink might displace local native species.’
    • ‘Fishers are among the least understood of the weasel family, or mustelids, which also includes martens, minks, ermines, ferrets, badgers, otters, and wolverines.’
    • ‘At heart, though, the ferret is a denizen of the countryside, a weasel closely related to the European polecat and the mink.’
    • ‘The session begins with a mammal expert explaining more about water voles, otters and mink.’
    • ‘Predators of erethizontids include mustelids such as martens, minks, wolverines, ermine, weasels, and fishers.’
    • ‘Experimental hybridization has established that polecats, ferrets, Steppe polecats, and European mink are able to produce fertile hybrids.’
    • ‘Prion diseases occur in sheep, goats, mink, mule deer, elk, cats and cows.’
    • ‘The weasel family includes such colourful characters as otters, wolverines, skunks, minks and badgers.’
    • ‘Animals used to make fur include dogs, cats, pumas, seals, badgers, foxes, otters, mink and squirrels.’
    • ‘Darwin had already cited the mink and the otter as transitional in conversion of land carnivores to aquatic habits.’
    • ‘Many carnivores, such as mink, seal, fox, and bobcat, have long been hunted or ranched for their fur.’
    • ‘Disturbance after eggs are laid provides opportunities for predation by carrion crows, jays, kestrels, magpies, foxes and mink.’
    • ‘One particular problem is the mink, which were farmed in the 1960s and escaped in large numbers.’
    • ‘Within the family Mustelidae, weasels, minks, and martens exhibit remarkable intra- and interspecific pelage color variations.’
    • ‘Badgers were most often mentioned, but minks and wolverines had been known to succumb occasionally.’
    • ‘If these were dogs, rabbits or mink, every farm gate would have dozens of protesters.’
    • ‘Whereas the largest are fairly well researched, knowledge of the fisher, wolverine, river otter, mink, lynx, bobcat, and raccoon is almost entirely from anecdote.’
    • ‘At the first level, the Mide priest would have a medicine bag made from the skin of an otter, marten, mink, or weasel.’
    1. 1.1mass noun The thick brown fur of the mink.
      • ‘Quite apart from the serious ethical questions surrounding the killing of animals for their fur, mink fell out of favour as it became associated with the vulgar side of wealth.’
      • ‘Fox, lynx, mink as well as shearing being dyed in strong colours dominate this season, whether it be trimmings on collar and cuffs or luxurious linings.’
      • ‘This marked rise in fur's popularity led to mink production increasing from 2.6 million to a staggering 28.6 million, skins with prices rocketing by 15 per cent over the same period.’
      • ‘Short cropped, short sleeved mink or fur jackets will be a 2004/5 fashion when worn with narrow trousers that seem sprayed on drainpipe style.’
      • ‘Much of the fur is mislabelled and people might think they are buying something like mink when actually it is cat or dog fur.’
      • ‘If Gweneviere's hands were cold, she would simply snuggle them into her mink muff.’
      • ‘If you have a 1960s cape like elbow sleeve mink jacket hiding away, or have an aunt or mother or even grandmother who has one or can pick one up in a thrift shop, get ready to don it this winter.’
      • ‘It can be made from a variety of pelts and hides including leather, sealskin, mink, racoon, rabbit or pigskin in hundreds of different styles.’
      • ‘Classic brown mink in NAFA Mahogany and Demi Buff were anything but traditional in their hip wrapped and belted silhouettes.’
      • ‘Deep plum tones are etched in black while bleached ivory mink is laser cut with contrasting brown.’
      • ‘There's a real paucity of suggestions for the beer-swilling boxer wearers in your life, unless those men also harbor secret fascinations with Christian Lacroix chairs and mink jackets.’
      • ‘First, the amount of fur on show at the exhibition has angered many, including protest group PETA who reacted against Julien Macdonalds's collection, which included fox, chinchilla, mink and sable furs.’
      • ‘He noted that there has been a considerable increase in the price of mink and fur; which may give an advantage to Karakul sales.’
      • ‘It seems French women can be very gullible when it comes to mink versus fox fur, but you're English aren't you?’
      • ‘That one's Russian mink.’
      • ‘The use of extraordinary precious materials make each piece unique: matte alligator, de-stressed crocodile, mink or lapin with snakeskin and anaconda.’
      • ‘I compliment the wife on her mink vest, although I think privately she looks a lot like Genghis Khan.’
      • ‘Oh, and Gucci's woman wouldn't dream of leaving the house without a rigid leather vest or that little fur chubby in mink and anaconda for special occasions!’
      • ‘Hermes has shown a T-shirt made of reindeer skin for men, while Cerruti made one of silver mink.’
      • ‘Among them are Queen Elizabeth II, Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Sir John A. MacDonald festooned in mink, beaver, muskrat, seal and rabbit.’
    2. 1.2 A coat made of mink.
      • ‘She had inherited Margot Grahame's mink, but the rest came from charity shops.’
      • ‘Of course, the ultimate in vulgar glamour was sporting a full-length white mink.’


Late Middle English (denoting the animal's fur): from Swedish.