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Any of various hoofed mammals of the order Perissodactyla, having an odd number of toes, either one or three, on each foot. Perissodactyls include the horses, tapirs, and rhinoceroses.

[New Latin perissodactylus, from Greek perissodaktulos : perissos, excessive, odd (from peri, beyond); see per in Indo-European roots + daktulos, finger.]

pe·ris′so·dac′tyl adj.


(pəˌrɪsəʊˈdæktɪl) or


(Animals) any placental mammal of the order Perissodactyla, having hooves with an odd number of toes: includes horses, tapirs, and rhinoceroses
(Animals) of, relating to, or belonging to the Perissodactyla
[C19: from New Latin perissodactylus, from Greek perissos uneven + daktulos digit]
peˌrissoˈdactylous, peˌrissoˈdactylic adj


(pəˌrɪs oʊˈdæk tɪl)

1. having an uneven number of toes or digits on each foot.
2. any mammal of the order Perissodactyla, comprising the odd-toed hoofed quadrupeds and including the tapirs, rhinoceroses, and horses.
Compare artiodactyl.
[1840–50; < New Latin perissodactylus < Greek perissó(s) uneven (derivative of périx (preposition and adv.) round about]
pe•ris`so•dac′ty•lous, adj.


Any of various hoofed mammals having an odd number of toes. Horses, tapirs, and rhinoceroses are perissodactyls. Also called odd-toed ungulate.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.perissodactyl - placental mammals having hooves with an odd number of toes on each foot
hoofed mammal, ungulate - any of a number of mammals with hooves that are superficially similar but not necessarily closely related taxonomically
order Perissodactyla, Perissodactyla - nonruminant ungulates: horses; tapirs; rhinoceros; extinct forms
equid, equine - hoofed mammals having slender legs and a flat coat with a narrow mane along the back of the neck
rhino, rhinoceros - massive powerful herbivorous odd-toed ungulate of southeast Asia and Africa having very thick skin and one or two horns on the snout
tapir - large inoffensive chiefly nocturnal ungulate of tropical America and southeast Asia having a heavy body and fleshy snout