elk

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elk

 (ĕlk)
n. pl. elk or elks
1. A large reddish-brown or grayish deer (Cervus canadensis) of western North America, having long, branching antlers in the male. The elk is sometimes considered a subspecies of the closely related red deer. Also called wapiti.
2. Chiefly British The moose.
3. A light, pliant leather of horsehide or calfskin, tanned and finished to resemble elk hide.

[Middle English, the European elk or moose (Alces alces), probably alteration of Old English eolh.]
Word History: In British English, elk refers to the species of large deer (scientific name Alces alces) known as moose in North America. In North American English, elk refers to a completely different species of deer, Cervus canadensis, that is closely related to the red deer (Cervus elaphus) of Europe. How did this confusing situation come about? The word elk comes from Old English eolh and originally referred to A. alces. Although the animal called eolh became extinct in Great Britain before AD 1000, the English were still aware of its existence on the continent, and so the word eolh survived into Middle English as elk. By the 17th century, due to hunting and the increase in human population, the red deer had also become scarce in the southern part of England, although some were maintained on wealthy estates to be hunted for sport. The average English person would thus have had only a vague knowledge of the red deer (C. elaphus), while the elk (A. alces) would have simply been a very large deer of distant Scandinavia known only by reputation. When English settlers arrived in North America, however, they were suddenly face-to-face with two large deer species and needed words to distinguish them. Although the elk (A. alces) was abundant, settlers did not identify it with the elk of Europe. Instead, they began calling it a moose, using a word borrowed from an Algonquian language of eastern North America. This left the name elk still available, and the English settlers gave it to a large deer, C. canadensis, that resembles the red deer of Europe. To add to the confusion, C. canadensis—the animal that North Americans call elk—is sometimes considered a subspecies of the red deer (C. elaphus). In North America, therefore, the words elk and red deer are sometimes treated as synonyms, both referring to the species C. elaphus.

elk

(ɛlk)
n, pl elks or elk
1. (Animals) a large deer, Alces alces, of N Europe and Asia, having large flattened palmate antlers: also occurs in North America, where it is called a moose
2. (Animals) American elk another name for wapiti
3. (Tanning) a stout pliable waterproof leather made from calfskin or horsehide
[Old English eolh; related to Old Norse elgr, Old High German elaho, Latin alcēs, Greek alkē, elaphos deer]

elk

(ɛlk)

n., pl. elks, (esp. collectively) elk for 1, 2.
1. Also called wapiti. a large North American deer, Cervus canadensis.
2. the moose, Alces alces.
3. pliable leather made from elk hide or from skin, as cowhide, tanned to resemble it.
4. (cap.) a member of a fraternal organization (Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks) that supports various charitable causes.
[before 900; Middle English; Old English eolc,eolh]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.elk - large northern deer with enormous flattened antlers in the maleelk - large northern deer with enormous flattened antlers in the male; called `elk' in Europe and `moose' in North America
cervid, deer - distinguished from Bovidae by the male's having solid deciduous antlers
Alces, genus Alces - elk or moose
2.elk - large North American deer with large much-branched antlers in the maleelk - large North American deer with large much-branched antlers in the male
cervid, deer - distinguished from Bovidae by the male's having solid deciduous antlers
Cervus, genus Cervus - the type genus of the Cervidae
3.elk - common deer of temperate Europe and Asiaelk - common deer of temperate Europe and Asia
cervid, deer - distinguished from Bovidae by the male's having solid deciduous antlers
Cervus, genus Cervus - the type genus of the Cervidae
stag, hart - a male deer, especially an adult male red deer
hind - a female deer, especially an adult female red deer
brocket - male red deer in its second year

elk

noun
Related words
collective noun gang
Translations
أيِّل كَبيرأيِّل كَبير شَمال أمْريكي
los
elgelsdyrwapiti
alko
põder
hirvi
jávorantilop
elgur
alces
briedisvapitis
alnisZiemelamerikas alnis
los
älg
elkiri geyikKanada geyiği

elk

[elk] N (elk or elks (pl)) (Zool) → alce m

elk

[ˈɛlk] [elk] (pl) n (= deer) → élan m

elk

nElch m

elk

[ɛlk] nalce m

elk

(elk) nounplurals elks ~elk
1. the largest of all deer, found in the north of Europe and Asia.
2. a large North American deer.
References in periodicals archive ?
semaphorin) 3D GNAT1 Guanine nucleotide binding protein (G-protein), alpha transducing activity polypeptide 1 NTNG1 Netrin G1 RGS3 Regulator of G-protein signaling 3 PIK3C2G Phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate 3-kinase, catalytic subunit type 2 gamma EPHB1 EPH receptor B1 Symbol Fold change Location Type(s) WNT16 -7.