hedgehog

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hedge·hog / ˈhejˌhôg; ˈhejˌhäg/ • n. a nocturnal insectivorous Old World mammal (family Erinaceidae) with a spiny coat and short legs, able to roll itself into a ball for defense. Its several species include the common hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) of western and northern Europe. ∎  any other animal covered with spines, esp. a porcupine.

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hedgehog Small, nocturnal Eurasian mammal of the family Erinaceidae. It has short, sharp spines above, lighter-coloured fur below, and a pointed snout. It feeds on insects and other small animals, and defends itself by rolling into a ball with the spines outermost. Species Erinaceus europaeus.

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hedgehog in the Bestiaries it is said to gather fruit for its young by impalement on its spines; it may thus be taken to exemplify prudence, or as an image of the Devil harvesting unwary souls.

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hedgehog See ERINACEOIDEA.