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dire wolf

noun
  1. an extinct wolf, Canis dirus, widespread in North America during the Pleistocene Epoch, having a larger body and a smaller brain than the modern wolf.
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Origin of dire wolf

1920–25; from the NL specific epithet dirus inspiring dread; cf. dire
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018