Variant of turtle
- any of a large and widely distributed order (Testudines) of terrestrial or aquatic reptiles having a toothless beak and a soft body encased in a tough shell into which, in most species, the head, tail, and four legs may be withdrawn: although aquatic, esp. marine, species are usually called turtle and land species are usually called tortoise, the terms are properly interchangeable for all species
- the flesh of some turtles, used as food
- Archaic turtledove
Origin: altered, probably influenced, influence by turtle(dove) from French tortue, tortoise from Vulgar Latin an unverified form tartaruca: see tortoise
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.