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newt

[noot, nyoot]
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noun
  1. any of several brilliantly colored salamanders of the family Salamandridae, especially those of the genera Triturus and Notophthalmus, of North America, Europe, and northern Asia.
  2. any of various other small salamanders.
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Origin of newt

1375–1425; late Middle English newte, for ewte (the phrase an ewte being taken as a newte; cf. nickname), variant of evet, Old English efete eft1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

toadfrogsalamanderhylaproteuscaeciliancaudatenewt

Examples from the Web for newt

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The new jaw, or leg, is a newt's, and never by any accident more like that of a frog.

    The Origin of Species

    Thomas H. Huxley

  • He seized Newt Elkey by the arm and said, "What does she do?"

    In a Little Town

    Rupert Hughes

  • I'd like to know what Newt Copley thinks of the Barville nine.

  • Of course every living speck, amoeba or newt, has its own individual soul.

  • I never heard of any; but I wanted a newt, and so I proposed that we should fish here.

    Ernest Bracebridge

    William H. G. Kingston


British Dictionary definitions for newt

newt

noun
  1. any of various small semiaquatic urodele amphibians, such as Triturus vulgaris (common newt) of Europe, having a long slender body and tail and short feeble legs
  2. mainly British any other urodele amphibian, including the salamanders
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Word Origin

C15: from a newt, a mistaken division of an ewt; ewt, from Old English eveta eft 1
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 newt

n.

early 15c., misdivision of an ewte (see N for other examples), from Middle English evete (see eft).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper