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troglodyte

[trog-luh-dahyt]
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noun
  1. a prehistoric cave dweller.
  2. a person of degraded, primitive, or brutal character.
  3. a person living in seclusion.
  4. a person unacquainted with affairs of the world.
  5. an animal living underground.
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Origin of troglodyte

1545–55; < Latin trōglodyta < Greek trōglodýtēs one who creeps into holes, cave dweller, equivalent to trōglo- (combining form of trṓglē a gnawed hole; cf. trogon) + dý(ein) to creep into + -tēs agent suffix
Related formstrog·lo·dyt·ic [trog-luh-dit-ik] /ˌtrɒg ləˈdɪt ɪk/, trog·lo·dyt·i·cal, adjectivetrog·lo·dyt·ism [trog-luh-dahy-tiz-uh m] /ˈtrɒg lə daɪˌtɪz əm/, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for troglodyte

hermit, flat, loner, leaning, troglodyte, solitary, cenobite, monk, nun, ascetic, solitaire, eremite, anchorite, clod, ruffian, monster, Philistine, lout, boor, hooligan

Examples from the Web for troglodyte

Historical Examples of troglodyte

  • The original cave man, the troglodyte, may have got his that way.

    Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete

    Albert Bigelow Paine

  • It seemed but a step to the Neanderthal skull and our Troglodyte forbears.

    A Labrador Doctor

    Wilfred Thomason Grenfell

  • During our stay at Philae she found a troglodyte who was induced to teach her his language.

  • The tomtit, the wren, and the troglodyte mingle their voices.

    The Bird

    Jules Michelet

  • "He's no troglodyte, Han, I'm certain—" Merrick's wife said plaintively.

    Turning Point

    Alfred Coppel


British Dictionary definitions for troglodyte

troglodyte

noun
  1. a cave dweller, esp one of the prehistoric peoples thought to have lived in caves
  2. informal a person who lives alone and appears eccentric
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Derived Formstroglodytic (ˌtrɒɡləˈdɪtɪk) or troglodytical, adjective

Word Origin for troglodyte

C16: via Latin from Greek trōglodutēs one who enters caves, from trōglē hole + duein to enter
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 troglodyte

n.

"cave-dweller," 1550s, from Latin troglodytae (plural), from Greek troglodytes "cave-dweller," literally "one who creeps into holes," from trogle "hole" (from trogein "to gnaw;" see trout) + dyein "go in, dive in."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper