A hen is a female chicken. It's important to make sure your new backyard chickens are hens and not roosters — otherwise, those eggs you're looking forward to just aren't going to happen.
You can use the word hen for the female of many birds, including turkeys, pheasants, and quail, as well as for a female lobster. In parts of Britain, a hen can also be a (slightly offensive) slang term for a woman, and if something's described as being "rare as hen's teeth," it's extremely precious or scarce.
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘hen'.
Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Vocabulary.com or its editors.
Send us feedback
Look up hen for the last time
Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the
words you need to know.