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1. (Science: ornithology) Any one of numerous species of limicoline game birds of the family Scolopacidae, having a long, slender, nearly straight beak.

The common, or whole, snipe (Gallinago coelestis) and the great, or double, snipe (G. Major), are the most important European species. The Wilson's snipe (G. Delicata) (sometimes erroneously called english snipe) and the gray snipe, or dowitcher (Macrohamphus griseus), are well-known American species.

2. A fool; a blockhead. Half snipe, the dunlin; the jacksnipe. Jack snipe. See Jacksnipe. Quail snipe. See Quail. Robin snipe, the knot. Sea snipe. Shore snipe, any sandpiper. Snipe hawk, the marsh harrier. Stone snipe, the tattler. Summer snipe, the dunlin; the green and the common European sandpipers. Winter snipe. See rock snipe, under Rock. Woodcock snipe, the great snipe.

Origin: OE. Snipe; akin to D. Snep, snip, LG. Sneppe, snippe, G. Schnepfe, Icel. Snipa (in comp), Dan. Sneppe, Sw. Snappa a sanpiper, and possibly to E. Snap. See Snap, Snaffle.