from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- proper n. A taxonomic phylum within the kingdom Animalia — the tardigrades.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n.pl. A tribe of edentates comprising the sloths. They are noted for the slowness of their movements when on the ground. See sloth, 3.
- n.pl. An order of minute aquatic arachnids; -- called also bear animalcules, sloth animalcules, and water bears.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- In Illiger's classification (1811), the eighth order of mammals, containing the sloths, with which, however, the sloth-bear (Prochilus) was included.
- Water-bears or bear-animalcules, an order of Arachnida synonymous with Arctisca. (See also Macrobiotidæ.) The order is sometimes raised to the rank of a class apart from Arachnida. See cut under Arctisca.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. in some classifications considered a separate phylum: microscopic arachnid-like invertebrates living in water or damp moss having 4 pairs of legs and instead of a mouth a pair of stylets or needlelike piercing organs connected with the pharynx
From Latin tardigradus ("slowly stepping"), from tardus ("slow") + gradior ("step, walk"), named by Spallanzani in 1776. (Wiktionary)