Small deer
Deer Deer (d[=e]r), n. sing. & pl. [OE. der, deor, animal, wild animal, AS. de['o]r; akin to D. dier, OFries. diar, G. thier, tier, Icel. d[=y]r, Dan. dyr, Sw. djur, Goth. dius; of unknown origin. [root]71.] 1. Any animal; especially, a wild animal. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

Mice and rats, and such small deer. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

The camel, that great deer. --Lindisfarne MS. [1913 Webster]

2. (Zo["o]l.) A ruminant of the genus {Cervus}, of many species, and of related genera of the family {Cervid[ae]}. The males, and in some species the females, have solid antlers, often much branched, which are shed annually. Their flesh, for which they are hunted, is called {venison}. [1913 Webster]

Note: The deer hunted in England is {Cervus elaphus}, called also stag or {red deer}; the fallow deer is {Cervus dama}; the common American deer is {Cervus Virginianus}; the blacktailed deer of Western North America is {Cervus Columbianus}; and the mule deer of the same region is {Cervus macrotis}. See {Axis}, {Fallow deer}, {Mule deer}, {Reindeer}. [1913 Webster]

Note: Deer is much used adjectively, or as the first part of a compound; as, deerkiller, deerslayer, deerslaying, deer hunting, deer stealing, deerlike, etc. [1913 Webster]

{Deer mouse} (Zo["o]l.), the white-footed mouse ({Peromyscus leucopus}, formerly {Hesperomys leucopus}) of America.

{Small deer}, petty game, not worth pursuing; -- used metaphorically. (See citation from Shakespeare under the first definition, above.) ``Minor critics . . . can find leisure for the chase of such small deer.'' --G. P. Marsh. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Deer — (d[=e]r), n. sing. & pl. [OE. der, deor, animal, wild animal, AS. de[ o]r; akin to D. dier, OFries. diar, G. thier, tier, Icel. d[=y]r, Dan. dyr, Sw. djur, Goth. dius; of unknown origin. [root]71.] 1. Any animal; especially, a wild animal. [Obs.] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Deer mouse — Deer Deer (d[=e]r), n. sing. & pl. [OE. der, deor, animal, wild animal, AS. de[ o]r; akin to D. dier, OFries. diar, G. thier, tier, Icel. d[=y]r, Dan. dyr, Sw. djur, Goth. dius; of unknown origin. [root]71.] 1. Any animal; especially, a wild… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • deer — (dîr) n. pl. deer ▸ Any of various hoofed ruminant mammals of the family Cervidae, characteristically having deciduous antlers borne chiefly by the males. The deer family includes the white tailed deer, elk, moose, and caribou. ╂ [Middle English… …   Word Histories

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  • deer — noun (plural same) a hoofed grazing or browsing animal, with branched bony antlers that are shed annually and typically borne only by the male. [Family Cervidae: many species.] Origin OE dēor, also orig. denoting any quadruped, used in the phr.… …   English new terms dictionary

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