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See also: Testudo



From Latin testūdō (tortoise, turtle, lyre, type of military shelter).


testudo (plural testudos or testudoes or testudines)

  1. (historical, Roman antiquity) A shelter formed by a body of troops by holding their shields or targets close together over their heads.
  2. (music) A kind of lyre; so called in allusion to the lyre of Mercury, fabled to have been made of the shell of a tortoise.


Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.




From Latin testūdō (tortoise).


testudo (accusative singular testudon, plural testudoj, accusative plural testudojn)

  1. tortoise, turtle

Derived terms[edit]



From testa (fragment of earthenware; shell or covering).



testūdō f (genitive testūdinis); third declension

  1. tortoise, turtle
  2. tortoise-shell
  3. (by extension) lyre, lute
  4. (by extension, military) covering, shed, shelter
  5. (by extension, in buildings) arch, vault


Third declension.

Case Singular Plural
nominative testūdō testūdinēs
genitive testūdinis testūdinum
dative testūdinī testūdinibus
accusative testūdinem testūdinēs
ablative testūdine testūdinibus
vocative testūdō testūdinēs

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]



  • testudo in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • testudo in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • du Cange, Charles (1883), “testudo”, in G. A. Louis Henschel, Pierre Carpentier, Léopold Favre, editors, Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (in Latin), Niort: L. Favre
  • testudo” in Félix Gaffiot’s Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette (1934)
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • to advance to the walls protected by a covering of shields: testudine facta moenia subire (B. G. 2. 6)
  • testudo in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • testudo in Ramminger, Johann (accessed 16 July 2016) Neulateinische Wortliste: Ein Wörterbuch des Lateinischen von Petrarca bis 1700[2], pre-publication website, 2005-2016
  • testudo in William Smith et al., editor (1890) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, London: William Wayte. G. E. Marindin