One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(of cattle) hornless.
- ‘You big boys seem to be like the muley cows in Oklahoma, who do not like to hook horns because muley cows by definition don't have horns.’
- ‘In one of the most entertaining events of the weekend, 20 two-man teams joined forces to rope and tie muley cattle weighing 600+ lb.’
- ‘The Jr. Boys will rope muley steers or calves at all rodeos; no roping steers will be used.’
Late 16th century (as noun): perhaps from Irish maol or Welsh moel, literally ‘bald’, used in the sense ‘hornless cow’. The adjective dates from the mid 19th century. Compare with moiley.
A mule deer.
- ‘We mainly hunt muleys and they are rather large compared to the whitetails I have seen.’
- ‘A small herd of muleys, both bucks and does, were hopping over the sage, making their way down a valley just outside of our camp.’
- ‘Even when they are relatively young, however, whitetails and muleys are much larger than coyotes; their hooves are dangerous, often fatal, to coyotes that overstep predatory bounds.’
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