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[hip-oh] /ˈhɪp oʊ/
noun, plural hippos. Informal.
Origin of hippo
by shortening


[hip-oh] /ˈhɪp oʊ/


a combining form appearing in loanwords from Greek, where it meant “horse” (hippodrome); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (hippology).
Also, especially before a vowel, hipp-.
< Greek: combining form of híppos; cognate with Latin equus, Old Irish ech, Old English eoh, Sanskrit aśvas, Lithuanian ašvà Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hippo
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The hippo, turning towards the hunter, afforded Mr Baker a good chance, and he fired a steady shot behind the ear.

    Great African Travellers W.H.G. Kingston
  • hippo acknowledged this with a look of the greatest distress.

    Skippy Bedelle Owen Johnson
  • His hopes rose high when tidings reached the palace that the Romans had abandoned the siege of hippo.

    Lords of the World Alfred John Church
  • He signaled Snorky and hippo and escaped up the road to the home of the pancake.

    Skippy Bedelle Owen Johnson
  • When Anfossi and I fired, the Deliverance was a hundred yards from the hippo, and the hippo was not five feet from the bank.

    The Congo and Coasts of Africa Richard Harding Davis
  • No trace of Almo could be discovered after he had sailed from hippo with Jegius.

    The Unwilling Vestal Edward Lucas White
British Dictionary definitions for hippo


noun (informal) (pl) -pos
short for hippopotamus
(South African) an armoured police car
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hippo

short for hippopotamus, attested from 1872.


before vowels, hipp-, word-forming element meaning "horse," from Greek hippo-, from hippos "horse," from PIE *ekwo- (see equine).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for hippo


The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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