- a wild ass, Equus hemionus, of southwestern Asia.
- an ancient and medieval military catapult for throwing stones.
Origin of onager
1300–50; Middle English < Late Latin: machine for throwing projectiles, Latin onager, onagrus wild ass < Greek ónagros (in both senses), alteration of ónos ágrios ass of the fields, wild ass (see acre)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for onagri
The square towers were not covered by roofs but by platforms, so as to allow catapults or onagri to be placed upon them.
The onagri hurled stones of sixty pounds weight to a maximum distance of two hundred and fifty paces.
Two onagri sometimes hurled stones at the workmen; but they, well shielded and always in motion, were seldom struck.
- a Persian variety of the wild ass, Equus hemionusCompare kiang
- an ancient war engine for hurling stones
C14: from Late Latin: military engine for stone throwing, from Latin: wild ass, from Greek onagros, from onos ass + agros field
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
Word Origin and History for onagri
Asiatic wild ass, mid-14c., from Latin onager, from Greek onagros, from onos "ass" (related to Latin asinus, but the ultimate source is unknown) + agrios "wild," literally "living in the fields," from agros "field" (see acre).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper