ermine

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English[edit]

Mustela erminea

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English ermine, ermin, ermyn, from Old French ermin, ermine, hermine, from Old Dutch *harmino ‘stoat skin’, from *harmo ‘stoat, weasel’ (compare Dutch dialectal herm), from Proto-Germanic *harmōn (compare Old English hearma, Old High German harmo (adj. harmin, obsolete German Harm), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱormon (compare Romansch carmun, obsolete Lithuanian šarmuõ).

Note: The supposed derivation from Medieval Latin mūs Armenius (Armenian mouse) is without any foundation. [1]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

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ermine (plural ermines)

  1. A weasel, Mustela erminea, found in northern latitudes; its dark brown fur turns white in winter (apart from the black tip of the tail)
  2. The white fur of this animal
  3. (poetic) A symbol of purity
  4. (figuratively) The office of a judge
  5. (heraldry) A white field with black spots

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

ermine (third-person singular simple present ermines, present participle ermining, simple past and past participle ermined)

  1. To clothe with ermine

References[edit]

  • OED 2nd edition 1989
  1. ^ ermine in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911

Anagrams[edit]


Old French[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

ermine f (oblique plural ermines, nominative singular ermine, nominative plural ermines)

  1. ermine (fabric)