Definitions

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

  • adj. Overlapping at the base to form a flat, fanlike arrangement in two ranks, as the leaves of some irises.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Mounted on, or sitting upon, a horse; riding on horseback.
  • adj. Overlapping at the base.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Mounted on, or sitting upon, a horse; riding on horseback.
  • adj. Overlapping each other; -- said of leaves whose bases are folded so as to overlap and bestride the leaves within or above them, as in the iris.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Riding on horseback; mounted upon a horse.
  • Straddling.
  • In entomology, applied to the antennæ or other jointed organs when they are compressed, and each joint appears to be longitudinally folded, inclosing the base of the succeeding one.

Etymologies

Latin equitāns, equitant-, present participle of equitāre, to ride horseback, from eques, equit-, horseman, from equus, horse; see ekwo- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin equitans, equitantis, present participle of equitō ("I ride on horseback"), from eques ("horseman"), from equus ("horse"). (Wiktionary)

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