Tortoise meaning

tôr'tĭs
One that moves slowly; a laggard.
noun
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Any of various terrestrial turtles, especially one of the family Testudinidae, characteristically having thick clublike hind limbs and a high, rounded carapace.
noun
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A turtle, esp. one that lives on land, as any of a worldwide family (Testudinidae)
noun
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Any of various land-dwelling reptiles, of family Testudinidae, whose body is enclosed in a shell (carapace plus plastron). The animal can withdraw its head and four legs partially into the shell, providing some protection from predators.
noun
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Origin of tortoise

  • Middle English tortuce turtle, tortoise probably partly from Anglo-Norman tortouse (variant of Old French tortue) and partly from Medieval Latin tortūca both ultimately from Vulgar Latin tartarūca feminine of *tartarūcus of Tartarus turtle1
    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
  • Middle English tortuse, tortuce, tortuge, from Medieval Latin tortuca, possibly from Late Latin tartarÅ«cha, from Late Latin tartarÅ«chus (“of Tartarus"), from Ancient Greek ταρταροῦχος (tartarouchos, “from Tartaros, Tartarus, the land of the dead in ancient stories"), because it used to be thought that tortoises and turtles came from the underworld; or from Latin tortus (“twisted").
    From Wiktionary