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Definitions of tortoise

  1. Any one of numerous species of reptiles of the order Testudinata. Webster Dictionary DB
  2. Same as Testudo, 2. Webster Dictionary DB
  3. having a color like that of a tortoise's shell, black with white and orange spots; - used mostly to describe cats of that color. Webster Dictionary DB
  4. A turtle, especially one that lives on land or in fresh water. The Winston Simplified Dictionary. By William Dodge Lewis, Edgar Arthur Singer. Published 1919.
  5. A reptile from which the head, neck, tail, and limbs protrude, so called either from its crooked feet or winding motion. The american dictionary of the english language. By Daniel Lyons. Published 1899.
  6. A four-footed reptile inclosed in a hard case. The Clarendon dictionary. By William Hand Browne, Samuel Stehman Haldeman. Published 1894.
  7. An animal, properly of the land, of the order chelonia, covered with a shell, from under which the head, the tail and the limbs protrude, so called from the twisted appearance of these last; a defence formed by bucklers held over the heads of the soldiers. See Testudo. Nuttall's Standard dictionary of the English language. By Nuttall, P.Austin. Published 1914.
  8. A reptile more or less flattened, covered with a very hard shell or case, into which it can draw its head and feet at will. Etymological and pronouncing dictionary of the English language. By Stormonth, James, Phelp, P. H. Published 1874.

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Usage examples for tortoise

  1. 1030, the giant tortoise lives between 200 and 300 years. – Autobiography of a YOGI by Paramhansa Yogananda
  2. The elephant that bore the earth stood upon a tortoise who fortunately could keep his feet in his shell, and so had no need to stand anywhere! – Early Letters of George Wm. Curtis by G. W. Curtis, ed. George Willis Cooke
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