marmot

[mahr-muh t]
noun
  1. any bushy-tailed, stocky rodent of the genus Marmota, as the woodchuck.
  2. any of certain related animals, as the prairie dogs.

Origin of marmot

1600–10; < French marmotte, Old French, apparently noun derivative of marmotter to mutter, murmur (referring to the whistling noises made by such animals), equivalent to marm- imitative base denoting a variety of indistinct, continuous sounds (cf. murmur) + -ot(t)er suffix of expressive verbs (though v. is attested only in modern F)
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British Dictionary definitions for marmot

marmot

noun
  1. any burrowing sciurine rodent of the genus Marmota, of Europe, Asia, and North America. They are heavily built, having short legs, a short furry tail, and coarse fur
  2. prairie marmot another name for prairie dog

Word Origin for marmot

C17: from French marmotte, perhaps ultimately from Latin mūr- (stem of mūs) mouse + montis of the mountain
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 marmot
n.

Alpine rodent, c.1600, from French marmotte, from Romansch (Swiss) murmont (assimilated to Old French marmote "monkey"), from Latin murem montis "mountain mouse."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper