• synonyms


  1. the ermine, Mustela erminea, especially when in brown summer pelage.
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Origin of stoat

1425–75; late Middle English stote < ?
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for stoat


  1. a small Eurasian musteline mammal, Mustela erminea, closely related to the weasels, having a brown coat and a black-tipped tail: in the northern parts of its range it has a white winter coat and is then known as an ermine
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Word Origin

C15: of unknown origin
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 stoat


mid-15c., stote, "ermine in its summer coat of brown," of uncertain origin. The word bears resemblance to Old Norse stutr "bull," Swedish stut "bull," Danish stud "ox," but the sense is difficult unless a common notion is "male animal."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper