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"of or pertaining to the planet Earth," 1881, in science fiction writing, from Latin terra (see terrain). Also used as a noun meaning "inhabitant of the Earth" (1953). An earlier form, terrene was used in Middle English in sense of "belonging to this world, earthly, secular, temporal" (c.1300), later, "of the Earth as a planet" (1630s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Examples from the Web for terran
Historical Examples
  • A nuisance on Balera, which is the equivalent of a terran swamp.

    Join Our Gang? Sterling E. Lanier
  • The kifs, the Venusian equivalent of the terran ant, stole his food.

    Happy Ending Fredric Brown
  • terran time and calendar were adapted as a matter of course.

    Masters of Space Edward Elmer Smith
  • "There are a lot of things no terran ever will understand," Sawtelle replied instantly.

    Masters of Space Edward Elmer Smith
  • If the Ardans could stop them, no terran need ever know anything about them.

    Masters of Space Edward Elmer Smith
  • The Idealists were of an anthropomorphic race, dark-skinned like the terran Indian.

    Cubs of the Wolf Raymond F. Jones
  • "I have studied terran physiology," he admitted complacently.

    Exile Horace Brown Fyfe
  • "I think we should not expect too much of this terran," he warned Klaft uneasily.

    Exile Horace Brown Fyfe
  • Kinton, disturbed, tried to remember whether he had spoken in terran or Tepoktan.

    Exile Horace Brown Fyfe
  • In one or two ways, he believed, no terran could teach their experts anything.

    Exile Horace Brown Fyfe

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