Definition of hedgehog in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈhejˌhôɡ/


Image of hedgehog
1A small nocturnal Old World mammal with a spiny coat and short legs, able to roll itself into a ball for defense.
  • Family Erinaceidae: four genera and several species, including the common hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) of western and northern Europe, which is predominantly insectivorous.
Example sentences
  • Animals co-habiting in the woods include field mice, grey squirrels, hedgehogs and three roe deer.
  • Many species of hedgehogs can roll up into a ball, hiding all vulnerable areas of the body under the protective spines.
  • The hedgehog is an old world mammal that has possibly changed little over a million years.
1.1Any other animal covered with spines, especially a porcupine.


Late Middle English: from hedge (from its habitat) + hog (from its piglike snout).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: hedge·hog

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