Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A long-legged, swift-running wild cat (Acinonyx jubatus) of Africa and southwest Asia, having tawny, black-spotted fur and nonretractile claws. The cheetah, the fastest animal on land, can run for short distances at about 96 kilometers (60 miles) per hour.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Zoöl.) A species of leopard (Cynælurus jubatus) tamed and used for hunting in India. The woolly cheetah of South Africa is Cynælurus laneus. It runs very fast in short spurts while hunting.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A distinctive member (Acinonyx jubatus) of the cat family , slightly smaller than the leopard, but with proportionately longer limbs and a smaller head; it is native to Africa and also credited with being the fastest terrestrial animal.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun long-legged spotted cat of Africa and southwestern Asia having nonretractile claws; the swiftest mammal; can be trained to run down game

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Hindi cītā, from Sanskrit citrakāyaḥ, tiger, leopard : citra-, variegated + kāyaḥ, body; see kwei- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Hindi चीता (cītā, "leopard", "panther"), ultimately from Sanskrit चित्र (citra, "multicolored", "speckled") (akin to Old High German haitar ("bright") > German heiter; Old Norse heiðr) + काय (kāya, "body"), thus "having a spotted body".

Examples

  • Now he's at work on a new book and photo project taking him around the world, with a new means of transportation, a bouncy gadget he calls cheetah legs.

    David Frey: Shooting From the Hip

  • Now he's at work on a new book and photo project taking him around the world, with a new means of transportation, a bouncy gadget he calls cheetah legs.

    David Frey: Shooting From the Hip

  • First introduced to the series when she was a tiny cub in 2005, Duma the cheetah is now about a year old and nearly equal in size to her mother (the image of Duma used above is from the Duma slideshow on the BBC website).

    Finally: big cat kills uncensored and uncut

  • First introduced to the series when she was a tiny cub in 2005, Duma the cheetah is now about a year old and nearly equal in size to her mother (the image of Duma used above is from the Duma slideshow on the BBC website).

    Archive 2006-07-01

  • Understanding the economic base of the country is extremely important to long-term cheetah survival.

    The Cheetah's Race for Survival

  • Amongst other things we saw a cheetah, which is pretty rare, and we also had a good time watching the baboons and warthogs hanging out together on the savannah.

    serengeti, ngorongoro crater, and lake manyara

  • Amongst other things we saw a cheetah, which is pretty rare, and we also had a good time watching the baboons and warthogs hanging out together on the savannah.

    Archive 2008-07-01

  • And the cheetah is the only member of the cat family that has non-retractable claws.

    Free to Run

  • Given the cheetah's tendency to activity, cats who spend most of their time sleeping in the sun might well label the cheetah hyperactive.

    Free to Run

  • And the cheetah is the only member of the cat family that has non-retractable claws.

    Archive 2009-06-01

Comments

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  • My cats race each other a lot. One claims to be a natural cheetah. Then the other says cheetahs never win.

    November 1, 2007

  • He must be lion. Cheetahs will all the time. (Look at the New England Patriots, for example..)

    November 1, 2007

  • Or she's just looking for lynx to her ancestors.

    November 1, 2007

  • Where's chained_bear? We need drum rolls on this page. ;-)

    November 1, 2007

  • This is a lot gazzle (sic gazelle) dazzle

    November 1, 2007

  • Ba dump bump!

    Sorry, wordie was down all morning for me. This is the first time I could get the page to load at all.

    November 2, 2007

  • Yeah, sorry about that. The company that hosts Wordie, slicehost, tanked this morning. Traffic couldn't get through to any sites they host.

    After which I took it down for a few minutes to add definitions to words. They come from WordNet, an open-source lexicographic database from Princeton. I'll polish this over time (WordNet supports more than just definitions, it's pretty cool), but figured I'd throw what I have out there, see how folks feel about it.

    November 2, 2007

  • Whew! We thought you had forgotten about us, c_b. ;)

    November 2, 2007

  • Ba dump bump!

    p.s. headcheese.

    November 2, 2007

  • I noticed those definitions, John. Slick! They're nice and faint and unobtrusive. Some of them have slight errors in punctuation though (didn't someone call me a punctuationista once?), and I'd love if this page reflected that cheetahs, in short sprints, are the fastest land mammal.

    Or did someone debunk that?

    November 2, 2007