a vehicle, usually having two or three wheels, that is propelled by the rider.
an early kind of bicycle or tricycle.
a light, three-wheeled, pedal-driven vehicle for railway inspection, used for carrying one person on a railroad track.

Origin of velocipede

1810–20; < French vélocipède bicycle, equivalent to véloci- (< Latin, stem of vēlōx quick) + -pède -ped
Related formsve·loc·i·ped·ist, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for velocipede

Historical Examples of velocipede

  • Mayall sprang on to the velocipede, but it slipped on the wet road, and he measured his length in the mud.

    The Brighton Road

    Charles G. Harper

  • It wouldn't be many days before I'd have a velocipede and a double-barrelled pistol.

    Phaeton Rogers

    Rossiter Johnson

  • If they do not stay at our logging-camp, the mogul will stay there, provided my woods-foreman lends them my velocipede.

  • The velocipede had been derailed by means of a car-stake placed across the track.

    The Long Chance

    Peter B. Kyne

  • Jimmie called angrily to the boy on the velocipede, "If you'll lend me yours, I'll show you whether I can or not."

    Whilomville Stories

    Stephen Crane

British Dictionary definitions for velocipede



an early form of bicycle propelled by pushing along the ground with the feet
any early form of bicycle or tricycle
Derived Formsvelocipedist, noun

Word Origin for velocipede

C19: from French vélocipède, from Latin vēlōx swift + pēs foot
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 velocipede

1819, "wheeled vehicle propelled by the feet on the ground," from French vélocipède, from Latin velox (genitive velocis) "swift" (see velocity) + pedem, accusative of pes "foot" (see foot (n.)). Applied to an early kind of bicycle or tricycle in 1849.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper