Definition of mastodon
1 : any of various extinct mammals (genus Mammut synonym Mastodon) of the elephant family existing from the Miocene through the Pleistocene that are distinguished from the related mammoths chiefly by molar teeth with cone-shaped cusps
2 : one that is unusually large
mastodonicplay \ˌmas-tə-ˈdä-nik\ adjective
mastodontplay \ˈmas-tə-ˌdänt\ adjective or noun
Examples of mastodon in a Sentence
mom-and-pop stores just can't compete with these mastodons of retailing
Recent Examples of mastodon from the Web
In April, work on a subway line extension near the La Brea Tar Pits was temporarily halted while paleontologists recovered first a camel bone and then a bone from an elephant relative, a mammoth or mastodon.
Bigger than dinosaurs, bigger than mastodons, a blue whale can reach up to almost 100 feet long and have been weighed at as much as 191 tons.
The place also showcased a famous mastodon, unearthed by the Peale family in upstate New York in the early 1800s.
In the culminating scene, six actors maneuver the bones of a mastodon, stepping the beast forward, one enormous limb at a time.
The mastodon’s bones and teeth were evidently placed on two stones used as anvils and smashed with three stone hammers, to get at nutritious marrow and create raw material for tools.
Back in 1992, a backhoe revealed mastodon remains during construction along State Route 54 in San Diego.
But the technique was not very reliable at the time, so the Cerutti mastodon remained an enigma.
Researchers say a site in Southern California shows evidence of humanlike behavior from about 130,000 years ago, when bones and teeth of an elephantlike mastodon were evidently smashed with rocks.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mastodon'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
MASTODON Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of mastodon for English Language Learners
: a type of animal that was related to the mammoth and that lived in ancient times
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