Dictionary > Elephants

Elephants

Elephant
1. (Science: zoology) a mammal of the order Proboscidia, of which two living species, Elephas Indicus and E. Africanus, and several fossil species, are known. They have a proboscis or trunk, and two large ivory tusks proceeding from the extremity of the upper jaw, and curving upwards. The molar teeth are large and have transverse folds. Elephants are the largest land animals now existing.
2. Ivory; the tusk of the elephant.
(Science: botany) elephant apple, the tooth shell. See dentalium.
Origin: oe. Elefaunt, olifant, OF. Olifant, f. Elephant, L. Elephantus, elephas, -antis, fr. Gr,; of unknown origin; perh. Fr. Skr. Ibha, with the Semitic article al, el, prefixed, or fr. Semitic Aleph hindi indian bull; or cf. Goth. Ulbandus camel, as. Olfend.


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