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mammoth

[mam-uh th] /ˈmæm əθ/
noun
1.
any large, elephantlike mammal of the extinct genus Mammuthus, from the Pleistocene Epoch, having hairy skin and ridged molar teeth.
adjective
2.
immensely large; huge; enormous:
a mammoth organization.
Origin
1690-1700
1690-1700; < Russian mam(m)ot (now mámont), first used in reference to remains of the animal found in Siberia; origin uncertain
Synonyms
2. See gigantic.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for mammoth
  • On one side was a mammoth corporation, little loved on the left.
  • From micro shrimp to mammoth hippos, the planet's wetlands host miraculous diversity.
  • Alternatively, woolly mammoth anatomy may have varied through time and from region to region.
  • Above anything else, the woolly mammoth is an evolutionary icon for its role in proving the truth of extinction.
  • The lasting benefits of such mammoth theatricals, however, are often questionable.
  • Missing tips mean that the earliest years of mammoth life remain poorly understood and age estimates for adults are imprecise.
  • He is currently writing a book about early woolly mammoth discoveries.
  • The mammoth traffic jam that left thousands of truckers sitting in gridlock for more than a week has vanished.
  • Penalties have often been big enough to dent profits, even at mammoth corporations.
  • mammoth wind turbines may soon dot the shallow coastal seas of the world.
British Dictionary definitions for mammoth

mammoth

/ˈmæməθ/
noun
1.
any large extinct elephant of the Pleistocene genus Mammuthus (or Elephas), such as M. primigenius (woolly mammoth), having a hairy coat and long curved tusks
adjective
2.
of gigantic size or importance
Word Origin
C18: from Russian mamot, from Tatar mamont, perhaps from mamma earth, because of a belief that the animal made burrows
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 mammoth
n.

1706, from Russian mammot', probably from Ostyak, a Finno-Ugric language of northern Russia (cf. Finnish maa "earth"). Because the remains were dug from the earth, the animal was believed to root like a mole. As an adjective, "gigantic," from 1802; in this sense "the word appears to be originally American" [Thornton, "American Glossary"], and its first uses are in derogatory accounts to the cheese wheel, more than 4 feet in diameter, sent to President Jefferson by the ladies of the Baptist congregation in Cheshire, Mass., as a present, engraved with the motto "Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God." Federalist editors mocked the affair, and called up the word mammoth (known from Peale's exhibition) to characterize it.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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mammoth in Science
mammoth
  (mām'əth)   
Any of various extinct elephants of the genus Mammuthus, having long, upwardly curving tusks and thick hair. Mammoths grew to great size and lived throughout the Northern Hemisphere during the Ice Age.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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