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[ee-oh-hip-uh s] /ˌi oʊˈhɪp əs/
the earliest known horse, a member of the extinct genus Hyracotherium (Eohippus), from the early Eocene Epoch of the Northern Hemisphere; a terrier-sized herbivore having four hoofed toes on each forefoot and three on each hind foot, and low-crowned teeth.
Also called dawn horse, hyracotherium, hyracothere.
Origin of eohippus
1875-80; < New Latin, equivalent to eo- eo- + Greek híppos horse Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for eohippus
Historical Examples
  • eohippus, the dawn horse, is the name given a skeleton found in 1880 in the lower Eocene strata in Wyoming.

  • In the Lower Eocene are found the remains of a diminutive ungulate (eohippus), of the stature of a moderately-sized dog.

    The Chain of Life in Geological Time Sir J. William Dawson
  • The oldest of these creatures that lead to the horses is called eohippus or beginning horse.

  • He would not be more astonished than would the ancient eohippus on meeting with a modern dray-horse.

    Theism or Atheism Chapman Cohen
  • Orohippus was but little larger than eohippus, and in most other respects very similar.

    Darwinism (1889) Alfred Russel Wallace
  • The earliest stage that we can trace with certainty, in this line of descent, is found in the eohippus of Marsh.

    Evolution Joseph Le Conte
British Dictionary definitions for eohippus


noun (pl) -puses
the earliest horse: an extinct Eocene dog-sized animal of the genus with four-toed forelegs, three-toed hindlegs, and teeth specialized for browsing
Word Origin
C19: New Latin, from eo- + Greek hippos horse
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 eohippus



oldest known genus of the horse family, 1879, from Modern Latin, from Greek eos (see eo-) + hippos "horse" (see equine).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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eohippus in Science
See hyracotherium.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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