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type of terrier (not recognized as a distinct breed), 1907, named for the Rev. John Russell (1795-1883) of Devonshire, "the sporting parson."
breed of terrier developed in England in the 19th century for hunting foxes both above and below ground. It was named for the Rev. John Russell, an avid hunter who created a strain of terriers from which are also descended the wire-haired fox terrier and the smooth fox terrier. Though it is not known which dogs he crossbred, it is believed that bull terriers and beagles were among the breeds used.