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

  • noun A member of a fabulous or prehistoric race of people that lived in caves, dens, or holes.
  • noun A person considered to be reclusive, reactionary, out of date, or brutish.
  • noun A nonhuman ape. Not in scientific use.
  • noun An animal that lives underground, as an ant or a worm. Not in scientific use.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Inhabiting caverns; cavedwelling; cavernicolous; spelæan; troglodytic: specifically noting human beings, apes, and birds.
  • noun A cave-dweller; a caveman; one who lives in a naturally formed cavity in the rocks, or, by extension, one who has his abode in a dwelling-place of that kind, whether constructed by enlarging a natural cave or by making an entirely new excavation.
  • noun Hence, one living in seclusion; one unacquainted with the affairs of the world.
  • noun In mammalogy, an anthropoid ape of the genus Troglodytes, as the chimpanzee or the gorilla, especially the former, which was earlier known to naturalists and was called Simia troglodytes.
  • noun In ornithology, a wren of the genus Troglodytes or family Troglodytldæ. The term is a misnomer, since no wrens live in caves.

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

  • noun (Ethnol.) One of any savage race that dwells in caves, instead of constructing dwellings; a cave dweller, or cave man. Most of the primitive races of man were troglodytes.
  • noun (Zoöl.) An anthropoid ape, as the chimpanzee.
  • noun (Zoöl.) The wren.

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

  • noun A member of a supposed prehistoric race that lived in caves or holes, a caveman.
  • noun by extension Anything that lives underground.
  • noun A reclusive, reactionary or out-of-date person, especially if brutish.
  • noun The wren, Troglodytes troglodytes.
  • noun computing A person who chooses not to keep up-to-date with the latest software and hardware.

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

  • noun someone who lives in a cave
  • noun one who lives in solitude


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

[From Latin Trōglodytae, a people said to be cave dwellers, from Greek Trōglodutai, alteration (influenced by trōglē, hole, and -dutai, those who enter) of Trōgodutai.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin trōglodyta ("cave dwelling people"), from Ancient Greek τρωγλοδύτης (trōglodutēs, "one who dwells in holes"), from τρώγλη (trōglē, "hole") + δύω (duō, "I get into").



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  • What a fine, fine word!

    October 23, 2007

  • Which begat a fine, fine band.

    October 23, 2007

  • Delicatessen is full of them!

    October 11, 2008

  • “Basically, John [McCain] is a technological troglodyte, and proud of it.”

    —Reed Hundt (former FCC chairman)

    Found here.

    January 28, 2010