Dictionary

1tortoiseshell

noun tor·toise·shell \ˈtr-tə-ˌshel, -əsh-ˌshel\

: the usually brown and yellow shell of a turtle that is used to make decorations

: a cat with yellow, orange, white, and black fur

: a usually brown and orange butterfly

Full Definition of TORTOISESHELL

1
:  the mottled horny substance of the shell of the hawksbill turtle used especially formerly in inlaying and in making various ornamental articles
2
:  any of several showy nymphalid butterflies (genera Nymphalis and Aglais)
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First Known Use of TORTOISESHELL

1632

2tortoiseshell

adjective

Definition of TORTOISESHELL

1
:  made of or resembling tortoiseshell especially in mottled brown and yellow coloring <tortoiseshell glasses>
2
:  of, relating to, or being a color pattern of the domestic cat consisting of patches of black, orange, and cream

First Known Use of TORTOISESHELL

1651
TORTOISESHELL Defined for Kids

tortoiseshell

noun tor·toise·shell \ˈtr-təs-ˌshel\

Definition of TORTOISESHELL for Kids

1
:  a hard brown and yellow material that covers the shell of a sea tortoise used especially in the past for ornamental objects
2
:  a brightly colored butterfly

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