Origin of hamsterGerman from Old High German hamustro, probably from Old Church Slavonic chom?stor? from or akin to Iranian hama?star, one who knocks down
Origin of hamsterGerman from Middle High German hamastra perhaps from Old High German hamustro of Slavic origin
- Any of various Old-World rodent species belonging to the subfamily Cricetinae.
- especially, the golden hamster, Mesocricetus auratus, and the dwarf hamsters of genus Phodopus, often kept as a pets and used in scientific research.
- It is the cutest sight to see a hamster stuff his puffy cheeks with food; where is it going to store it?
- Other rodents of similar appearance, such as the maned hamster or crested hamster, Lophiomys imhausi, mouse-like hamsters of genus Calomyscus, and the white-tailed rat (Mystromys albicaudatus).
1607; from German Hamster, from Old High German hamastra, hamustro, from Old East Slavic хомѣсторъ (choměstorŭ), хомѣстаръ (choměstarŭ), compound of (1) хомѣкъ (choměkŭ) ‘hamster’ (compare Russian хомяк (chomják), Polish chomik), from Proto-Balto-Slavic *kāmia (compare Latvian kāmis ‘hamster’, Lithuanian kãmas ‘rat’), and of (2) Baltic *stara (compare Lithuanian stãras ‘ground squirrel’).