1. Any of various extinct elephants of the genus Mammuthus of the Pliocene, Pleistocene, and Holocene Epochs, having ridged molars and often, as in the woolly mammoth, long tusks and hair.
2. Something that is of great size.
1. Of enormous size, extent, or amount; huge. See Synonyms at enormous.
2. Of great scope or importance: mammoth expectations.
[Ultimately (perhaps influenced by BEHEMOTH) from Russian mamont, mamot, probably from earlier Mansi (Ugric language of western Siberia) *mān-oŋt- : *mān, earth (akin to modern Mansi mā-, earth, as in mā-xar, mammoth (literally, "earth stag")) + *oŋt-, horn (in reference to fossil mammoth tusks).]
(click for a larger image)mammoth
woolly mammoth Mammuthus primigenius
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
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