I'm solving now tests in English and one of the questions is about the name of the place that hen is found: the options are: a) coop b) run c) shed. According to the key of the book (which is not attached here), the three options are correct.

Then after checking in Oxford dictionary I found that the word run has a lot of meanings and one of them (no.8) is:

"An enclosed area in which domestic animals or birds may run freely in the open."

Now my question is: how common is the useage of this word in nowdays, since I didn't see this use in the past and I know that there are lot of words or meanings that they are actually not in use, and someone who uses them may not be understaood by people or alternatively considered weird because their archaic usage. Is that the case here or not?

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  • The addition of alternatively considered weird brings this question even closer to being opinion based, which is off topic. Also, while you see at it, you could correct a few typos in your question. Nov 5, 2016 at 17:01
  • 1
    There are plenty of valid uses that may not be known by large segments of the population: city dwellers may not know what a run is, despite its use in a movie title, while they most certainly would know the meaning of shed and coup –as well as house as in hen house and chicken house. Also a dog run is a feature of a house (for humans), but many people may never have heard of it. So validity of use is not always the same thing as "how common" a usage is. Nov 5, 2016 at 17:07

2 Answers 2


Chickens may be in a run during the day, but locked in a coop at night.

Similarly for horses, a stable is a building where the horse sleeps; it may be located in a paddock (field) or the horse may be brought in from the paddock at night.

Trains are also "stabled" in sheds or sidings at night.


enter image description hereNgrams shows chicken coop being most popular.

[![here][4]][4] [4]:https://web.archive.org/web/20170707141336/http://beginningfarmers.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Frozen-Chickens.jpg

I had not known about the possibility of "Chicken Run" until the movie came out


Anyone living in a major urban area will know about dog runs


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