noun Chiefly Scot.
- the blackbird, Turdus merula.
- a bluish gray color mottled with black.
- being the color merle.
- a male or female given name.
- Scot another name for the (European) blackbird
- (of a dog, esp a collie) having a bluish-grey coat with speckles or streaks of blackOften called: blue merle
n.“blackbird,” late 15c., from Old French merle “blackbird” (12c.), from Latin merulus “blackbird,” from PIE *ams- “black, blackbird” (cf. Old English osle “blackbird;” see ouzel). The word owes its survival in modern times to its use by Scottish poets. The Latin word shows effects of rhotacism. It also is the source of Provençal and Spanish merla, Portuguese merlo, and Italian merla. Borrowed from French are Middle Dutch and German merle, Dutch meerle.