Rattlesnake
Rattlesnake Rat"tle*snake` (r[a^]t"t'l*sn[=a]k`), n. (Zo["o]l.) Any one of several species of venomous American snakes belonging to the genera {Crotalus} and {Caudisona}, or {Sistrurus}; sometimes also called {rattler}. They have a series of horny interlocking joints at the end of the tail which make a sharp rattling sound when shaken. The common rattlesnake of the Northern United States ({Crotalus horridus}), and the {diamondback rattlesnake} (also called {diamondback rattler}, and {diamondback}) of the South and East ({Crotalus adamanteus}) and West ({Crotalus atrox}), are the best known. See Illust. of {Fang}. [1913 Webster +PJC]

{Ground rattlesnake} (Zo["o]l.), a small rattlesnake ({Caudisona miliaria} or {Sistrurus miliaria}) of the Southern United States, having a small rattle. It has nine large scales on its head.

{Rattlesnake fern} (Bot.), a common American fern ({Botrychium Virginianum}) having a triangular decompound frond and a long-stalked panicle of spore cases rising from the middle of the frond.

{Rattlesnake grass} (Bot.), a handsome American grass ({Glyceria Canadensis}) with an ample panicle of rather large ovate spikelets, each one composed of imbricated parts and slightly resembling the rattle of the rattlesnake. Sometimes called {quaking grass}.

{Rattlesnake plantain} (Bot.), See under {Plantain}.

{Rattlesnake root} (Bot.), a name given to certain American species of the composite genus {Prenanthes} ({Prenanthes alba} and {Prenanthes serpentaria}), formerly asserted to cure the bite of the rattlesnake. Called also {lion's foot}, {gall of the earth}, and {white lettuce}.

{Rattlesnake's master} (Bot.) (a) A species of Agave ({Agave Virginica}) growing in the Southern United States. (b) An umbelliferous plant ({Eryngium yucc[ae]folium}) with large bristly-fringed linear leaves. (c) A composite plant, the blazing star ({Liatris squarrosa}).

{Rattlesnake weed} (Bot.), a plant of the composite genus {Hieracium} ({Hieracium venosum}); -- probably so named from its spotted leaves. See also {Snakeroot}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • rattlesnake — (n.) 1620s, from RATTLE (Cf. rattle) + SNAKE (Cf. snake) (n.). Shortened form rattler is from 1827 …   Etymology dictionary

  • rattlesnake — ► NOUN ▪ a heavy bodied American viper with a series of horny rings on the tail that produce a characteristic rattling sound when vibrated as a warning …   English terms dictionary

  • rattlesnake — ☆ rattlesnake [rat′ l snāk΄ ] n. any of various poisonous American pit vipers (genera Crotalus and Sistrurus), having an interlocking series of horny rings at the end of the tail that produce a rattling or buzzing sound when shaken …   English World dictionary

  • Rattlesnake — Taxobox name = Rattlesnake image caption = Crotalus atrox image width = 240px regnum = Animalia phylum = Chordata classis = Reptilia ordo = Squamata subordo = Serpentes familia = Viperidae subfamilia = Crotalinae genus = Crotalus genus authority …   Wikipedia

  • rattlesnake — /rat l snayk /, n. any of several New World pit vipers of the genera Crotalus and Sistrurus, having a rattle composed of a series of horny, interlocking elements at the end of the tail. [1620 30, Amer.; RATTLE1 + SNAKE] * * * Any of about 30… …   Universalium

  • rattlesnake — A member of the crotalid genera Crotalus and Sistrurus, characterized by possession of cuticular warning rattles at the tip of the tail. * * * rat·tle·snake rat əl .snāk n any of the American pit vipers that have a series of horny interlocking… …   Medical dictionary

  • rattlesnake — n. a rattlesnake bites, strikes * * * [ rætlsneɪk] strikes a rattlesnake bites …   Combinatory dictionary

  • rattlesnake — [[t]ræ̱t(ə)lsneɪk[/t]] rattlesnakes N COUNT A rattlesnake is a poisonous American snake which can make a rattling noise with its tail. He had been bitten by a rattlesnake …   English dictionary

  • rattlesnake — UK [ˈræt(ə)lˌsneɪk] / US noun [countable] Word forms rattlesnake : singular rattlesnake plural rattlesnakes a poisonous US snake that makes a noise that sounds like a rattle with its tail …   English dictionary

  • rattlesnake — noun Date: 1630 any of several American pit vipers (genera Crotalus and Sistrurus) that have horny interlocking joints at the end of the tail which make a sharp rattling sound when shaken …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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