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Ti"ger (?), n. [OE. tigre, F. tigre, L. tigris, Gr. ti`gris; probably of Persian origin; cf. Zend tighra pointed, tighri an arrow, Per. tir; perhaps akin to E. stick, v.t.; -- probably so named from its quickness.]


A very large and powerful carnivore (Felis tigris) native of Southern Asia and the East Indies. Its back and sides are tawny or rufous yellow, transversely striped with black, the tail is ringed with black, the throat and belly are nearly white. When full grown, it equals or exceeds the lion in size and strength. Called also royal tiger, and Bengal tiger.


Fig.: A ferocious, bloodthirsty person.

As for heinous tiger, Tamora. Shak.


A servant in livery, who rids with his master or mistress.



A kind of growl or screech, after cheering; as, three cheers and a tiger.

[Colloq. U.S.]


A pneumatic box or pan used in refining sugar.

American tiger. Zool. (a) The puma. (b) The jaguar. -- Clouded tiger Zool., a handsome striped and spotted carnivore (Felis macrocelis or F. marmorata) native of the East Indies and Southern Asia. Its body is about three and a half feet long, and its tail about three feet long. Its ground color is brownish gray, and the dark markings are irregular stripes, spots, and rings, but there are always two dark bands on the face, one extending back from the eye, and one from the angle of the mouth. Called also tortoise-shell tiger. -- Mexican tiger Zool., the jaguar. -- Tiger beetle Zool., any one of numerous species of active carnivorous beetles of the family Cicindelidae. They usually inhabit dry or sandy places, and fly rapidly. -- Tiger bittern. Zool. See Sun bittern, under Sun. -- Tiger cat Zool., any one of several species of wild cats of moderate size with dark transverse bars or stripes somewhat resembling those of the tiger. -- Tiger flower Bot., an iridaceous plant of the genus Tigridia (as T. conchiflora, T. grandiflora, etc.) having showy flowers, spotted or streaked somewhat like the skin of a tiger. -- Tiger grass Bot., a low East Indian fan palm (Chamaerops Ritchieana). It is used in many ways by the natives. J. Smith (Dict. Econ. Plants). -- Tiger lily. Bot. See under Lily. -- Tiger moth Zool., any one of numerous species of moths of the family Arctiadae which are striped or barred with black and white or with other conspicuous colors. The larvae are called woolly bears. -- Tiger shark Zool., a voracious shark (Galeocerdo maculatus or tigrinus) more or less barred or spotted with yellow. It is found in both the Atlantic and Indian Ocean. Called also zebra shark. -- Tiger shell Zool., a large and conspicuously spotted cowrie (Cypraea tigris); -- so called from its fancied resemblance to a tiger in color and markings. Called also tiger cowrie. -- Tiger wolf Zool., the spotted hyena (Hyaena crocuta). -- Tiger wood, the variegated heartwood of a tree (Machaerium Schomburgkii) found in Guiana.


© Webster 1913.