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caltrap


caltrap


  1  definition  found 
 
  From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]: 
 
  Caltrop  \Cal"trop\,  Caltrap  \Cal"trap\,  n.  [OE.  calketrappe 
  calletrappe  caltor  (in  both  senses),  fr  AS  collr[ae]ppe, 
  calcetreppe  sort  of  thistle;  cf  F.  chaussetrape  star 
  thistle,  trap,  It  calcatreppo  calcatreppolo  star  thistle. 
  Perh.  from  L.  calx  heel  +  the  same  word  as  E.  trap.  See  1st 
  {Trap}.] 
  1.  (Bot.)  A  genus  of  herbaceous  plants  ({Tribulus})  of  the 
  order  {Zygophylle[ae]},  having  a  hard  several-celled 
  fruit,  armed  with  stout  spines,  and  resembling  the 
  military  instrument  of  the  same  name  The  species  grow  in 
  warm  countries,  and  are  often  very  annoying  to  cattle. 
 
  2.  (Mil.)  An  instrument  with  four  iron  points,  so  disposed 
  that  any  three  of  them  being  on  the  ground,  the  other 
  projects  upward.  They  are  scattered  on  the  ground  where  an 
  enemy's  cavalry  are  to  pass,  to  impede  their  progress  by 
  endangering  the  horses'  feet.