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opossum

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noun opos·sum \(ə-)ˈpä-səm\

Simple Definition of opossum

  • : a somewhat small white or gray animal that is usually active at night and that lives in North and South America and in Australia

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of opossum

plural

opossums

also

opossum

  1. 1 :  any of a family (Didelphidae) of American marsupials that usually have a pointed snout and prehensile tail; especially :  a common omnivorous largely nocturnal mammal (Didelphis virginiana) of North America that has grayish to blackish fur with white on the cheeks and is an expert climber

  2. 2 :  any of several Australian phalangers

Illustration of opossum

Origin and Etymology of opossum

earlier apossoun, opassom, Virginia Algonquian, from Algonquian *wa·p- white + *-aʔθemw- dog


First Known Use: 1610

Other Mammals Terms

Rhymes with opossum


OPOSSUM Defined for Kids

opossum

play
noun opos·sum \ə-ˈpä-səm\

Definition of opossum for Students

  1. :  an American animal related to the kangaroo that has a long pointed snout, lives both on the ground and in trees, and is active at night




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