armadillo

[ ahr-muh-dil-oh ]
/ ˌɑr məˈdɪl oʊ /

noun, plural ar·ma·dil·los.

any of several burrowing, chiefly nocturnal mammals constituting the family Dasypodidae, ranging from the southern U.S. through South America, having strong claws and a jointed protective covering of bony plates: used in certain areas for food.

Origin of armadillo

1570–80; < Spanish, equivalent to armad(o) armed (< Latin armātus; see arm2, -ate1) + -illo < Latin -illus diminutive suffix
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British Dictionary definitions for armadillo

armadillo

/ (ˌɑːməˈdɪləʊ) /

noun plural -los

any edentate mammal of the family Dasypodidae of Central and South America and S North America, such as Priodontes giganteus (giant armadillo). They are burrowing animals, with peglike rootless teeth and a covering of strong horny plates over most of the body
fairy armadillo another name for pichiciego

Word Origin for armadillo

C16: from Spanish, diminutive of armado armed (man), from Latin armātus armed; compare armada
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