• synonyms


[hahr-tuh-beest, hahrt-beest]
noun, plural har·te·beests, (especially collectively) har·te·beest.
  1. any large African antelope of the genus Alcelaphus, having ringed horns that curve backward: some species are endangered.
  2. any of several related African antelopes, as certain species of the genus Damaliscus.
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Origin of hartebeest

From Afrikaans, dating back to 1780–90; see origin at hart, beast
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for hartebeest

Historical Examples

  • They are very fond of hartebeest, zebra, rhino, and especially hippo.

    In Africa

    John T. McCutcheon

  • "Cokei" is the name given the hartebeest discovered by Coke, and so on.

    In Africa

    John T. McCutcheon

  • Great numbers of Coke's hartebeest watched us with humorous interest.

    In Africa

    John T. McCutcheon

  • They commence with a section or sub-family of which the type is the Hartebeest.

  • "Hartebeest, bushbuck and antelope," replied the explorer calmly.

British Dictionary definitions for hartebeest


hartbeest (ˈhɑːtˌbiːst)

  1. either of two large African antelopes, Alcelaphus buselaphus or A. lichtensteini, having an elongated muzzle, lyre-shaped horns, and a fawn-coloured coat
  2. any similar and related animal, such as Damaliscus hunteri (Hunter's hartebeest)
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Word Origin

C18: via Afrikaans from Dutch; see hart, beast
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 hartebeest


1786, from Afrikaans, from Dutch hertebeest "antelope," from hert "hart" (see hart) + beest "beast, ox" (in S.African Dutch "steer, cattle"), from Middle Dutch beeste, from Old French beste "beast" (see beast).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper