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

  • n. A cosmopolitan aquatic herb (Hippuris vulgaris) having minute flowers and linear whorled leaves.
  • n. A long narrow cirrus cloud with a flowing appearance.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A long streaky cloud, spreading out like a horse's tail, and believed to indicate rain; a cirrus cloud. See cloud.
  • n. An aquatic plant of the genus Hippuris (Hippuris vulgaris), having narrow leaves in whorls.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A plant of the genus Hippuris: most properly H. vulgaris.
  • n. The horsetail, Equisetum. See bottle-brush, 2.
  • n. plural Long straight fibers of gray cirrus cloud, an indication of the approach of stormy weather.
  • n. In anatomy, the cauda equina (which see, under cauda).
  • Like a mare's tail; of the kind called mare's-tails: said of clouds.
  • n. The horseweed, Leptilon Canadense.
  • n. The heath-aster, Aster ericoides.

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

  • n. a long narrow flowing cirrus cloud


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Among aquatic plants, mare's-tail Hippuris vulgaris is frequent along the shores of many ponds, smaller lakes and slow flowing streams.

    Ilulissat Icefjord, Denmark-Greenland

  • The blazing sun of early morning was gone; muted by high mare's-tail clouds with lower, puffier clouds moving in on the wind.

    The Gates Of Sleep

  • There is a disembodied skylark voice somewhere high up in the mare's-tail clouds which veil the earth from too much heat and brightness; and the young heart is unhardened and unspotted from the world.

    Despair's Last Journey

  • Long, dappled mare's-tail clouds stretched across the pale November sky, and every now and then the sun shone out between them.

    A harum-scarum schoolgirl

  • I sat at the entrance of my gipsy-like hut, anxiously watching the weather, and absorbed in admiration of the moonrise, from which my thoughts were soon diverted by its fading light as it entered a dense mass of mare's-tail cirrus.

    Himalayan Journals — Complete


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