from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A large aquatic rodent (Ondatra zibethica) of North America, related to the lemming and the vole and having a dense brown coat and musk glands under a broad flat tail. Also called musquash, water rat.
- n. The fur of this rodent.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A large aquatic rodent; Ondatra zibethicus.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A North American aquatic fur-bearing rodent (Ondatra zibethica formerly Fiber zibethicus). It resembles a rat in color and having a long scaly tail, but the tail is compressed, the hind feet are webbed, and the ears are concealed in the fur. It has scent glands which secrete a substance having a strong odor of musk. Called also musquash, musk beaver, ondatra, and sometimes water rat.
- n. The musk shrew.
- n. The desman.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A large murine rodent quadruped, Fiber zibethicus, of the family Muridœ and subfamily Arvicolinœ: so called from its musky odor.
- n. An insectivorous animal of musky odor likened to a rat, such as the European desman, Mygale pyrenaica, and the Indian musk-shrew or rat-tailed shrew, Sorex indicus or Crocidura myosura, also called Indian muskrat and monjourou.
- n. A viverrine quadruped, the South African genet, Genetta felina.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the brown fur of a muskrat
- n. beaver-like aquatic rodent of North America with dark glossy brown fur
Perhaps so called for its musky odour and because it resembles a rat, or perhaps called by an Algonquian name like the Abenaki moskwas, with the spelling altered under the influence of the English words musk and rat. (Wiktionary)