Definition of merino in US English:


nounPlural merinos

  • 1A sheep of a breed with long, fine wool.

    • ‘In fact, it was whipped up locally, using dollops of lanolin, which happily was plentiful in the land of merinos.’
    • ‘I was deeply upset to learn fro my friends at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals about the extreme suffering of merino lambs and sheep in the Australian wool industry.’
    • ‘These crumply-nosed, curly-horned, taupe-colored, kinky-haired merinos are the toughest of New Zealand's 40 million sheep, enduring high elevation, scorching summers, and brutal winters.’
    • ‘Running tourists alongside merinos has saved many a cockie's bottom line.’
    • ‘The Langes first proposed that they buy the two stations, take the cattle off them and concentrate entirely on traditional merino sheep.’
    • ‘I ran over 1,200 cows and over 2,000 fine wool merino ewes and 300 crossbred ewes.’
    • ‘There's enough feed to bring our remaining sheep back from adjistment… and we are going to try and find a way to buy more merinos if we can.’
    • ‘The Spanish not only brought much more modern looms but also merino sheep in the hope of replacing one of the most common native wools, camelid.’
    • ‘Here, flocks of fine wool-bearing merino sheep (first imported from the Cape Colony in 1797) spread out and by 1880 it supported over 60 million sheep.’
    • ‘The sheep was ideal, the merino sheep because it has big neck folds, the wool breeders grew them with a lot of skin.’
    • ‘Before the clinical investigation, they performed a biomechanical investigation using 30 merino sheep.’
    • ‘In 1773, English navigator and explorer Captain James Cook landed two merino sheep in the Marlborough Sounds, in the north of the South Island.’
    • ‘Macarthur's flocks were based on Spanish merinos and the term pure merino became a metaphor for colonial aristocracy.’
    • ‘The Central Sheep and Wool Research Institute encourages tourists to become entrepreneurs with a display of livestock of bharat merino sheep, white giant and German angora rabbits.’
    • ‘The participants and production crew moved to Oxley Downs, six hours drive from Sydney to the property with 12 buildings, a dilapidated garden, horses, chickens, geese, a cow and 1.300 merino sheep.’
    • ‘The yellow shoes represent the sunshine, the green jackets the rolling hills where the famous merino sheep graze peacefully and those striped things must be either gum leaves or sheep vomit.’
    • ‘The hills were as green as in dreams, merino sheep had green seeds sprouting in their wool.’
    • ‘Wool-bearing merinos shouldered aside the Khoikhoi fat-tailed varieties adopted by the early trekboer colonists.’
    • ‘First, it is knitted into a voluminous hat by women in Ariana just to the north of Tunis using imported wool from Australian merino sheep for the deluxe version, local wool for less expensive models.’
    • ‘Before World War Two, we used to eat what was left after the merino had given up its wool.’
    1. 1.1 A soft woolen or wool-and-cotton material resembling cashmere, originally of merino wool.
      • ‘If you find wool uncomfortable or itchy, you can find sweaters in merino wool, cashmere or mohair, for a softer, almost silky touch - but these can be more pricey, especially cashmere.’
      • ‘Make your coffee run in cushy style with this cashmere pullover and merino shearling vest.’
      • ‘Aran weight, chunky, pure new wool, merino, cotton dk, 4 ply, mohair, angora; you name it I've probably got it in my stash somewhere.’
      • ‘Your were wearing these black chinos and this merino wool sweater that matched your eyes, I remember because one of my students spilled a beaker of HCl right in front of you and a little got on that sweater.’
      • ‘Different fabrics include merino or light wool, cashmere, and cotton, which can all be worn under sports jackets.’
      • ‘In the grand salon, blue merino covered the chairs and sofas and served for curtains.’
      • ‘The cloth, a lightweight charcoal grey worsted made with Extrafine merino wool, has been produced by top weaver Clissold.’
      • ‘Stock up on key fabrics like cotton, linen, silk and lightweight knits in the summer months, and wool, cashmere and merino knits in the winter.’
      • ‘He showed very strong suits, pairing them with stretch tank tops, lambskin zip vests, and great looking feather weight merino - cashmere ribbed sweaters.’
      • ‘The fibers in merino wool can be bent 20,000 times before breaking, making the fiber very soft and durable.’
      • ‘Her button-off coat and merino high-neck jumper had considerable quality when we checked these out at close range at the Incubator's premises.’
      • ‘Since introducing merino in 1846, Hollins had become a leading spinner of this fine wool-cotton mixture.’
      • ‘In addition, you're sure to find a lot of merino wool in stores, as well as plenty of sharp, tailored suits.’
      • ‘A lightweight V-neck sweater is a great idea (made of fabrics such as merino wool or cotton - any breathable, cool fabric), and you can wear the sweater over a shirt, with the shirt collar exposed.’
      • ‘Sweaters are simpler this season, available in fabrics such as cotton, regular wool, merino wool or cashmere.’
      • ‘It's a worsted weight merino wool, and must be twelve inches wide, but do you think I could get the measurements right?’
      • ‘I was so pleased with the bright one that I did, that I decided to do a conservative one, using the brushed alpaca / merino that Lesley sent me from Australia, mixed with some Mercury in sunrise.’
      • ‘She wants to feel merino wool, flannel next to her skin.’
      • ‘The yarn is a cashmere merino laceweight that I bought from Scotland, in a very soft linen colour.’
      • ‘Every single one of her cardigans is beautifully shaped and made from high-quality heavy-gauge cotton (or merino wool for autumn and winter wear).’
    2. 1.2 A fine woolen yarn.
      • ‘‘This spinning wheel is a little darling,’ she added, deftly teasing out a skein of deep bluey green yarn - a luxury mixture of mohair, merino and silk.’
      • ‘When the paper patterns were colored, the stitcher replicated the colors with her palette of soft merino wool yarns.’
      • ‘It is wonderfully soft and dye free, composed of alpaca and merino from the rare yarns company.’


Late 18th century: from Spanish, of unknown origin.