Definition of dormouse
: any of numerous small, nocturnal, furry-tailed Old World rodents (family Myoxidae synonym Gliridae) that live mainly in trees and resemble small squirrels ◆Dormice hibernate during cold weather and may become torpid at other times of the year when food is scarce.
Did You Know?
Any of 20 rodent species found throughout Eurasia and North Africa, dormice have large eyes, soft fur, rounded ears, and a hairy tail. They live in trees, bushes, and rock walls and in nests of plant material. They eat fruit, nuts, birds’ eggs, and some insects and small animals. Many species sleep for long periods, particularly in winter. The largest species, known as the edible dormouse, is gray and attains a maximum length of 8 in (20 cm), excluding the 6-in (15-cm) tail.
Origin and Etymology of dormouse
Middle English dormowse, perhaps from Anglo-French dormir + Middle English mous mouse
First Known Use: 15th century
DORMOUSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of dormouse for English Language Learners
: a European animal that looks like a small squirrel
DORMOUSE Defined for Kids
Definition of dormouse for Students
: a small European animal that resembles a mouse but has a bushy tail, lives mostly in trees, and is active at night
Seen and Heard
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