Origin of echidna
Examples from the Web for echidna
The first of these creatures is called the echidna, and is also known as the spiny ant-eater.The Animal World, A Book of Natural History|Theodore Wood
Some said he was the son of the giant Typhon and the snake Echidna; others that he had dropped down from the moon to the earth.Myths and Legends of All Nations|Various
The Ornithorhyncus has fur, the Echidna has spines, with hairs between them.Stories of the Universe: Animal Life|B. Lindsay
With the exception of the atlas of Echidna the cervical vertebrae of Monotremes are without zygapophyses.The Vertebrate Skeleton|Sidney H. Reynolds
The vast brood of Echidna in mythology expresses the brood of evil in nature.Demonology and Devil-lore|Moncure Daniel Conway
British Dictionary definitions for echidna
noun plural -nas or -nae (-niː)
Word Origin for echidna
Word Origin and History for echidna
Australian egg-laying hedgehog-like mammal, 1847, usually explained as from Greek ekhidna "snake, viper," from ekhis "snake," from PIE *angwhi- "snake, eel" (cf. Norwegian igle, Old High German egala, German Egel "leech," Latin anguis "serpent, snake").
But this sense is difficult to reconcile with this animal (unless it is a reference to the ant-eating tongue), and the name seems more properly to belong to Latin echinus, Greek ekhinos "sea-urchin," originally "hedgehog" (in Greek also "sharp points"), which Watkins explains as "snake-eater," from ekhis "snake."