Terrapin
Terrapin Ter"ra*pin, n. [Probably of American Indian origin.] (Zo["o]l.) Any one of numerous species of tortoises living in fresh and brackish waters. Many of them are valued for food. [Written also {terapin}, {terrapen}, {terrapene}, {turpen}, and {turapen}.] [1913 Webster]

Note: The yellow-bellied terrapin ({Pseudemys scabra}) of the Southern United States, the red-bellied terrapin ({Pseudemys rugosa} or {Chrysemys rubriventris}), native of the tributaries Chesapeake Bay (called also {potter}, {slider}, and {redfender}), and the diamond-back or salt-marsh terrapin ({Malaclemmys palustris}), are the most important American species. The diamond-back terrapin is native of nearly the whole of the Atlantic coast of the United States. [1913 Webster]

{Alligator terrapin}, the snapping turtle.

{Mud terrapin}, any one of numerous species of American tortoises of the genus {Cinosternon}.

{Painted terrapin}, the painted turtle. See under {Painted}.

{Speckled terrapin}, a small fresh-water American terrapin ({Chelopus guttatus}) having the carapace black with round yellow spots; -- called also {spotted turtle}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • terrapin — N.Amer. turtle, 1670s, earlier torope (1610s), from an Algonquian source (e.g. Abenaki turepe, Delaware tulpe turtle ). Subsequently extended to allied species in S.Amer., E.Indies, China, N.Africa …   Etymology dictionary

  • terrapin — ► NOUN ▪ a small freshwater turtle. ORIGIN Algonquian …   English terms dictionary

  • terrapin — ☆ terrapin [ter′ə pin ] n. [< dim. of earlier torope, tortoise < Virginia Algonquian] 1. any of a family (Emydidae) of North American, terrestrial, freshwater or tidewater turtles, esp. the diamondback 2. its edible flesh …   English World dictionary

  • Terrapin — A terrapin is a turtle that lives in fresh or brackish water.David Alderton (1986). An Interpet Guide to Reptiles Amphibians , p. 63. Salamander Books Ltd., London New York.] TaxonomyAlthough sometimes superficially similar to sea turtles in… …   Wikipedia

  • terrapin — /ter euh pin/, n. 1. any of several edible North American turtles of the family Emydidae, inhabiting fresh or brackish waters, esp. the diamondback terrapin: some are threatened or endangered. 2. any of various similar turtles. [1605 15; earlier… …   Universalium

  • terrapin — noun 1》 a small freshwater turtle. [Malaclemys terrapin (diamondback terrapin, eastern US) and many other species elsewhere.] 2》 (Terrapin) Brit. trademark a prefabricated one storey building for temporary use. Origin C17: of Algonquian origin …   English new terms dictionary

  • terrapin — UK [ˈterəpɪn] / US [ˈterəˌpɪn] noun [countable] Word forms terrapin : singular terrapin plural terrapins a small animal that lives in water and has a hard shell on its back. It is a type of turtle …   English dictionary

  • terrapin — noun Etymology: alteration of earlier torope, from Virginia Algonquian *to•rəpe•w Date: 1613 any of various aquatic turtles (family Emydidae); especially diamondback terrapin …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • terrapin — [[t]te̱rəpɪn[/t]] terrapins N COUNT A terrapin is a reptile which has a thick shell covering its body and which lives partly in water and partly on land …   English dictionary

  • terrapin — ter•ra•pin [[t]ˈtɛr ə pɪn[/t]] n. ram any of several edible North American turtles of the family Emydidae, inhabiting fresh or brackish waters, esp. the diamondback terrapin • Etymology: 1665–75, amer.; earlier torope < Eastern Algonquian… …   From formal English to slang

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