noun (plural same or beavers)
1A large semiaquatic broad-tailed rodent that is native to North America and northern Eurasia. It is noted for its habit of gnawing through tree trunks to fell the trees in order to feed on the bark and build dams.
- The Rodentia also includes beavers, muskrats, porcupines, woodchucks, chipmunks, squirrels, prairie dogs, marmots, chinchillas, voles, lemmings, and many others.
- This slow-moving creature is Canada's largest rodent next to the beaver.
- For all the interest in leopards, Waser thinks philopatry may turn out to be more common in species such as beavers, wood rats and kangaroo rats-animals in which females make large investments in their ranges.
1.1The soft light brown fur of the beaver.
- Also on the program that night were the Marshall Dancers from the Lower Yukon, dressed in sumptuous headdresses that were trimmed with wolf and beaver fur.
- The biggest difference was that New Netherland and its port town were together principally a trading colony, buying beaver and other fur skins from the Indians to sell at a profit in Europe.
- There were six different furs to choose from including brown and grey Persian lamb, and beaver.
1.2 (also beaver hat) chiefly historical A hat made of felted beaver fur.
- Padlin doubted his eyes were visible, shadowed from the overhead gaslights by the brim of his beaver hat.
- Savvy Yanker bankrollers in Missouri rounded up a bunch of tough lads for capturing beaver pelts to satisfy the rage of the day - the beaver hat.
- Franklin used his fame to win an alliance with France, even letting himself be pictured in a beaver hat.
1.3 (also beaver cloth) A heavy woolen cloth resembling felted beaver fur.
- Florence was given away by her father and wore a travelling dress of brown beaver cloth with hat and gloves to match.
- It is similar to beaver cloth but lighter and finer.
- The Sears ad copy, ‘The coat is made from an extra good quality Rareton Mills blue beaver cloth and makes a very dressy and warm garment.’
verb[no object] informal Back to top
Work hard: Bridget beavered away to keep things running smoothly
More example sentences
- Workers in bright-yellow hard hats are beavering away, moving bucketloads of stones in wheelbarrows and trying to clear a pile of rubble with a digger.
- No, really, we've been working hard, beavering away while Jane, who normally occupies this slot, has sloped off on the piste in Les Alps.
- But maybe a PR system would encourage some of the old Labour figures to make a break or allow some new far-left formation to emerge - it would certainly encourage people to ‘do a Galloway’ rather than beaver away for change inside Labour.
Words that rhyme with beaverachiever, believer, cleaver, deceiver, diva, Eva, fever, Geneva, griever, heaver, leaver, lever, Neva, perceiver, receiver, reiver, reliever, retriever, Shiva, underachiever, viva, weaver, weever
The lower part of the face guard of a helmet in a suit of armor. The term is also used to refer to the upper part or visor, or to a single movable guard.
- The ghost wears the beaver, or visor, of the helmet raised.
- But the only sport was to behold him eat; for by reason his helmet was on, and his beaver lifted, he could put nothing into his mouth himself if others did not help him to find the way.
Late 15th century: from Old French baviere 'bib', from baver 'to drool'.
Early 20th century: of unknown origin.
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