American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Any of several swift, wild, horselike African mammals of the genus Equus, having distinctive overall markings of alternating white and black or brown stripes.
- n. Any of various striped organisms, such as the zebra butterfly.
- n. A referee in football.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A name used by fish-culturists in England for hybrids between Salmo fario, the European trout, and Salmo fontinalis, the American brook-trout.
- n. An American heliconiid butterfly, Apostraphia charithonia, with black, yellow-banded wings. It occurs in Central America, the West Indies, and the southern United States. Its larvæ feed on the passion-flower vine.
- n. An African solidungulate mammal, related to the horse and ass, of the genus Equus and subgenus Hippotigris, having the body more or less completely striped. There are at least 3 well-marked species. One of these is the quagga. The second is the bonte-quagga, or Burchell's zebra. (See cut under
dauw.) The third is the true zebra, E. (H.) zebra, of southern Africa, of a whitish color, very fully and regularly striped with black: it is specifically called the mountain zebra. This zebra stands about 4½ feet high at the shoulder; the head is light, the ears are moderately large, the limbs slender; the mane is short, and the tail tufted. The general form is light and symmetrical, like that of most wild asses, and seems to indicate speed rather than bottom. The zebra is one of the most beautiful of animals, as it is also one of the wildest and least tractable. It has often been kept in confinement, and occasionally tamed, but generally retains its indomitable temper. It inhabits in herds the hilly and mountainous countries of South Africa, seeking the most secluded places; so that from the nature of its haunts, as well as its watchfulness, swiftness, and the acuteness of its senses, it is difficult to capture. It is, however, much hunted, and seems destined to extermination.
- Resembling the stripes of a zebra; having stripes running along the sides: as, the zebra markings on certain spiders.
- n. An African animal, closely related to a horse, with black and white stripes.
- n. sports, slang A referee.
- n. medicine, slang An unlikely diagnosis, especially for symptoms probably caused by a common ailment. (Originates in the advice often given to medical students: "When you hear hoof beats, think of horses, not zebras.")
- n. vulgar, pejorative, slang A bi-racial person, specifically one born to a member of the Sub-Saharan African race and a Caucasian.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Zoöl.) Any member of three species of African wild horses remarkable for having the body white or yellowish white, and conspicuously marked with dark brown or brackish bands.
- n. any of several fleet black-and-white striped African equines
- From the Congolese word for the animal (possibly meaning striped) via Old Portuguese zevra. This etymology is disputed. (Wiktionary)
- Italian, from Old Portuguese zevro, zevra, wild ass. Sense 3, from the referee's striped shirt. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“Thus the horse, in the nomenclature of the naturalist, is termed _Equus caballus_; the ass, _Equus asinus_; and the zebra, _Equus zebra_.”
“First, there is the true zebra (_Equus zebra_), perhaps the most beautiful of all quadrupeds, and of which no description need be given.”
“And, as they say, a zebra is a horse designed by a committee.”
“For example, hidden between a whale and a zebra is a "snakamel", a snake with a camel's head.”
“When I first saw it, I thought it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing, what we call a zebra,”
“Let's see, I heard it over the wire, and Mr. Jenks was all broke up over the catastrophe, so he mixed things up some; but I remember he said all the camels and the elephants had lit out, ditto their trained ostrich that draws a cart around the ring like a hoss; and there was some monkeys that broke loose too, yes, and now I think of it he did mention a striped animal which he called the zebra; and I think he said a lot of lions and tigers, and also a few others I can't recall for the moment!”
“When a momentarily striped animal was called a zebra, it was tricked into believing it could only be one form, one thing.”
“A zebra is roaming the Little Hocking area in Ohio.”
“I have heard that zebra is pretty dang good eating.”
“It strikes me that shooting a zebra is somewhat like shooting a wild mustang horse.”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘zebra’.
A list of words that are odd or words that I have looked up.
Names of animals that are also used to describe kinds of people. Nouns only, preferably single word.
For a related list, see sionnach's beastly verbs.
variegated armadillos and other asundry bands and stripes
revising for a competition 30 games
in 24 hours
5-Letter words with J, X, Q or Z
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My big word list.
Words with the letter b within the word, not just as the initial or last letter.
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This is a test list created by the Knicker automated tests.
Looking for tweets for zebra.