Definition of caltrop in English:

caltrop

Syllabification: cal·trop
Pronunciation: /ˈkaltrəp, ˈkôl-
 
/

noun

1A spiked metal device thrown on the ground to impede wheeled vehicles or (formerly) cavalry horses.
More example sentences
  • The plot progresses like a horse marching over caltrops, jerking wildly every time its foot encounters the next point.
  • It was a combination of towers, palisades, ditches, abatis, and caltrops to slow the attacking Gauls, so that Roman missile engines could more effectively engage them.
  • He didn't know what weapon he possessed, if any, beyond the caltrops.
2A creeping plant with woody carpels that typically have hard spines and resemble military caltrops.
  • Genus Tribulus, family Zygophyllaceae
More example sentences
  • Caltrop is quite rare in Cottesloe, as far as I know, and it looks like this infestation may have been introduced during works associated with the path construction, perhaps.
  • Caltrop is a perennial herb that can infest a wide variety of crops and pastures.
  • Caltrop is an herbaceous annual that commonly grows prostrated on the ground.
3 (also water caltrop) another term for water chestnut (sense 3).

Origin

Old English calcatrippe, denoting any plant that tended to catch the feet, from medieval Latin calcatrippa, from calx 'heel' or calcare 'to tread' + a word related to trap1. sense 1 was probably adopted from French.

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