- A large, extinct ground sloth of the genus Megatherium that lived from the Miocene through the Pleistocene Epochs, primarily in South America. It was as large as an elephant, had long curved claws and teeth only in the sides of its jaws, and ate plants. The megatherium was more closely related to the modern two-toed sloth than to the three-toed sloth.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Examples from the Web for megatherium
I at first thought it belonged either to the Megalonyx or Megatherium (4/1).More Letters of Charles Darwin
"And to the Megatherium sitting on the man—" said Jack, laughing.The Merryweathers
Laura E. Richards
To the geologist man is just as much and just as little as a trilobite or a megatherium.Modern Skepticism
C. J. Ellicott
The feet also are different from those of Megatherium (see Fig. 50).Extinct Monsters
H. N. Hutchinson
Is there not the Megatherium for the literary, and the Munchausen for the travelled?General Bounce
G. J. Whyte-Melville