- any of several edible North American turtles of the family Emydidae, inhabiting fresh or brackish waters, especially the diamondback terrapin: some are threatened or endangered.
- any of various similar turtles.
Origin of terrapin
Examples from the Web for terrapin
The menswear crowd—who are obsessed with all things heritage, camo, and the F word—fell fast in love with Terrapin.Terrapin Stationers, the Most Badass New Stationer
July 10, 2013
It is a supper dish, and is brought in with terrapin, oysters, &c.Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches
Why should any member of a club so proper as the Terrapin ask Meadows?The Faith Doctor
His only approach to invidious comment was in regard to the terrapin.A Border Ruffian
Thomas A. Janvier
The terrapin lives in the mud, and is only to be found in marshy places.The Boy With the U. S. Fisheries
He was not the little terrapin we have now, but the first Terrapin.
- any of various web-footed chelonian reptiles that live on land and in fresh water and feed on small aquatic animals: family EmydidaeAlso called: water tortoise
Word Origin and History for terrapin
North American turtle, 1670s, earlier torope (1610s), from an Algonquian source (e.g. Abenaki turepe, Delaware tulpe "turtle"). Subsequently extended to allied species in South America, East Indies, China, North Africa.