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Crossword clues for porcupine

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ And there, just in front of this cave, lifeless and on its back, lay a young porcupine.
▪ But this porcupine had no scratch on its belly; it had been attacked at the front end instead.
▪ Here the spikes can become enormous quills - those of the great crested porcupine are as long as 20 inches.
▪ One of the stars of Jane's collection was this porcupine fish, which probably came from the Tropics.
▪ Or the do-probe-me inaccessibility of a porcupine.
▪ Puffers Closely related to the porcupine fish are the puffers.
▪ Some describe it as a red-eyed E. look-alike with porcupine quills running down his spine.
▪ Where he had touched her her scalp was prickling like a porcupine.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Porcupine \Por"cu*pine\, n. [OE. porkepyn, porpentine, OF. porc-espi, F. porc-['e]pic (cf. It. porco spino, porco spinoso, Sp. puerco espino, puerco espin, fr. L. porcus swine + spina thorn, spine). The last part of the French word is perhaps a corruption from the It. or Sp.; cf. F. ['e]pi ear, a spike of grain, L. spica. See Pork, Spike a large nail, Spine.]

  1. (Zo["o]l.) Any Old Word rodent of the genus Hystrix, having the back covered with long, sharp, erectile spines or quills, sometimes a foot long. The common species of Europe and Asia ( Hystrix cristata) is the best known.

  2. (Zo["o]l.) Any species of Erethizon and related genera, native of America. They are related to the true porcupines, but have shorter spines, and are arboreal in their habits. The Canada porcupine ( Erethizon dorsatus) is a well known species.

    Porcupine ant-eater (Zo["o]l.), the echidna.

    Porcupine crab (Zo["o]l.), a large spiny Japanese crab ( Acantholithodes hystrix).

    Porcupine disease (Med.). See Ichthyosis.

    Porcupine fish (Zo["o]l.), any plectognath fish having the body covered with spines which become erect when the body is inflated. See Diodon, and Globefish.

    Porcupine grass (Bot.), a grass ( Stipa spartea) with grains bearing a stout twisted awn, which, by coiling and uncoiling through changes in moisture, propels the sharp-pointed and barbellate grain into the wool and flesh of sheep. It is found from Illinois westward. See Illustration in Appendix.

    Porcupine wood (Bot.), the hard outer wood of the cocoa palm; -- so called because, when cut horizontally, the markings of the wood resemble the quills of a porcupine.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

c.1400, porke despyne, from Old French porc-espin (early 13c., Modern French porc-épic), literally "spiny pig," from Latin porcus "hog" + spina "thorn, spine" (see spine). The word had many forms in Middle English and early Modern English, including portepyn, porkpen, porkenpick, porpoynt, and Shakespeare's porpentine (in "Hamlet").


n. Any of several rodents of either of the taxonomic family Hystricidae (Old World porcupines) or Erethizontidae (New World porcupines), noted for their sharp spines or quills, which are raised when the animal is attacked or surprised.


n. relatively large rodents with sharp erectile bristles mingled with the fur [syn: hedgehog]

Porcupine, SD -- U.S. Census Designated Place in South Dakota
Population (2000): 407
Housing Units (2000): 103
Land area (2000): 9.493955 sq. miles (24.589229 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 9.493955 sq. miles (24.589229 sq. km)
FIPS code: 51340
Located within: South Dakota (SD), FIPS 46
Location: 43.262380 N, 102.347660 W
ZIP Codes (1990): 57772
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Porcupine, SD

Porcupines are rodents with a coat of sharp spines, or quills, that protect against predators. The term covers two families of animals, the Old World porcupines and New World porcupines. Both families belong to the Hystricognathi branch of the vast order Rodentia and display similar coats of quills, but they still are quite different and are not closely related.

The Old World porcupines live in southern Europe, Asia (western as well as southern), and most of Africa. They are large, terrestrial, and strictly nocturnal. In taxonomic terms, they form the family Hystricidae.

The New World porcupines are indigenous to North America and northern South America. They live in wooded areas and can climb trees, where some species spend their entire lives. They are less strictly nocturnal than their Old World relatives, and generally smaller. In taxonomic terms, they form the family Erethizontidae.

Porcupines are the third-largest of the rodents, behind the capybara and the beaver. Most porcupines are about long, with an long tail. Weighing , they are rounded, large, and slow. Porcupines occur in various shades of brown, gray, and white. Porcupines' spiny protection resembles that of the unrelated erinaceomorph hedgehogs and Australian spiny anteaters or monotreme echidnas.

Porcupine (comics)

Porcupine is the name used by three fictional characters in Marvel Comics.

Porcupine (disambiguation)

A porcupine is a mammal best known for its coat of sharp spines, or quills, that provides a defense from predators.

Porcupine may also refer to:

Porcupine (album)

Porcupine is the third studio album by the English post-punk band Echo & the Bunnymen. First released on 4 February 1983, it became the band's highest charting release when it reached number two on the UK Albums Chart despite initially receiving poor reviews. It also reached number 137 on the American Billboard 200, number 85 on the Canadian RPM 100 Albums and number 24 on the Swedish chart. In 1984 the album was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry. Porcupine included the singles " The Back of Love" and " The Cutter".

The album was recorded at Trident Studios in London, Rockfield Studios in South Wales and Amazon Studios in Liverpool. It was produced by Ian Broudie, who was credited as "Kingbird" and who had co-produced the band's first album, 1980's Crocodiles, and their second single, " Rescue". After being rejected by the band's label, the album was re-recorded with Shankar providing strings. It was originally released as an LP in 1983 before being reissued on CD in 1988. The album was again reissued on CD in 2003, along with the other four of the band's first five studio albums, having been remastered and expanded. A VHS video called Porcupine – An Atlas Adventure was also released containing six promotional videos of tracks from the album.

Porcupine (Cheyenne)

Porcupine ( – 1929) was a Cheyenne chief and medicine man. He is best known for bringing the Ghost Dance religion to the Cheyenne. Raised with the Sioux of a Cheyenne mother, he married a Cheyenne himself and became a warrior in the Cheyenne Dog Soldiers.

Porcupine fought against the US in Hancock's War in 1867 in which the Cheyenne resisted moving to a reservation. Porcupine's group was pursued by the 7th Cavalry from Kansas to Nebraska. In Nebraska he succeeded in derailing and wrecking a train, the first time this had been done by Indians. At the conclusion of the Great Sioux War of 1876, the Cheyenne surrendered and were deported to Oklahoma. Porcupine took part in the Northern Cheyenne Exodus in which a part of the starving tribe fought their way back to their homeland in Montana. Porcupine was one of a group of Cheyennes who were subsequently arrested on charges of murdering settlers as the Cheyennes crossed Kansas. After spending most of 1879 in prison, the charges were dismissed without a full trial taking place.

In 1889, Porcupine undertook a long journey to visit Wovoka in Nevada. Wovoka was the prophet of the new Ghost Dance religion. Porcupine believed that Wovoka was the Messiah who would save the Indians and rid the continent of the white men. Porcupine returned to preach the new religion to the Cheyennes and began baptising converts into his church. The Ghost Dance spread throughout the plains tribes. Fear of it led to it being suppressed by the US army. While the Cheyenne did not suffer tragedy on the scale of the Sioux at Wounded Knee, Porcupine could only perform the dance in secret from 1890 onwards. In 1900 he was imprisoned for attempting to revive the religion.

Porcupine, like Wovoka, preached peace and took no part in the violence associated with the Ghost Dance elsewhere. He was a chief representing the Cheyenne in several treaty councils with the US, including leading a delegation to Washington.

Usage examples of "porcupine".

The abrasive warrior woman was about as warm and cuddly as a porcupine, and just as touchy.

She and Gai bring warthog and kudu hides, porcupine quills, tortoise shells, ostrich eggs, a sharpening stone, an awl, two assagai blades, pots of Bantu clay.

Anyone with eyes would eventually learn that Minid males pressed their suits from behind and that, in order to facilitate disengagement should a dinothere come dithering along or a porcupine prickling past, partners often remained upright.

It is a good man who can show a reaction that is not chiefly composed of a drachm or two of potash and magnesia, with traces of Adam, Ananias, Nebuchadnezzar, and the fretful porcupine.

Therefore the bag of his wife was always filled with goanna tails, with great porcupines and birds and grubs, though the wife herself got the grubs as well as the fern roots.

The pains were an hour apart to begin with, then every fifteen minutes or so and every ten and so forth until at last it was just one long unbearable century or so of anguish while the thing that seemed to fill me from gullet to goolies, a thing with sharp hooves and needles like a porcupine, was being pried out by some invisible force using a battering ram and a fireplace poker.

Squirrels, Marmots, Jerboas, Mole-Rats, Rats, Mice, Voles, Porcupines, and Hares.

Among the broken mealies we found the body of a very old man, as full of assegai wounds as a porcupine with quills.

The common people preferred attacking the gazelle, the oryx, the mouflon sheep, the ibex, the wild ox, and the ostrich, but did not disdain more humble game, such as the porcupine and long-eared hare: nondescript packs, in which the jackal and the hyena ran side by side with the wolf-dog and the lithe Abyssinian greyhound, scented and retrieved for their master the prey which he had pierced with his arrows.

As more and more antenna blades were stuck to its skin, the once-graceful U-2 was beginning to resemble a porcupine.

All of the artifacts and even a human skull had been recovered from areas where they had been redeposited by the Porcupine and Old Crow rivers.

Or, perhaps, it was the wild cat crouching along a branch with its wicked yellow eyes fixed upon the squirrels which played at the farther end, or else with a scuttle and rush the Canadian porcupine would thrust its way among the yellow blossoms of the resin weed and the tangle of the whortleberry bushes.

Middle Border Museum and Oscar Howe Art Center, which displays American Indian beadwork and porcupine quillwork.

And the porcupines and the bushbuck and the duikers will follow them in.

There, too, with a not unbecoming gleam of barbaric colors, shone the string of porcupine beads to which the Indian charmstone hidden in her bosom was attached.