Also found in: Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
zo·ril·la(zə-rĭl′ə) also zor·il , or zor·ille (zôr′ĭl, zŏr′-)
A carnivorous mustelid mammal (Ictonyx striatus) of Africa, resembling a skunk in appearance and in its method of defense.
[From New Latin (Mūstēla) zorilla, former species name, from French zorille, zorilla, from American Spanish zorrillo, skunk, from diminutive of Spanish zorro, fox, masculine back-formation from feminine zorra, vixen, from Old Spanish, idle and immoral woman, from zorrar, to drag, possibly imitative of the sound of dragging, or possibly variant of jorrar, to drag (probably from Arabic jurr, masculine singular imperative jarra, to drag; see grr in the Appendix of Semitic roots).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Animals) a skunk-like African musteline mammal, Ictonyx striatus, having a long black-and-white coat
[C18: from French, from Spanish zorrillo a little fox, from zorro fox]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014