Definition of dassie in English:

dassie

Pronunciation /ˈdasē/ /ˈdæsi/

noundassies

  • A hyrax, especially the rock hyrax of southern Africa.

    Family Procaviidae, in particular Procavia capensis

    ‘Some of these dassies, these hyraxes, went into the rocks, but this one actually climbs into the treetops.’
    • ‘Back at the campsite, spotted hyenas and dassies can be seen at dusk and into the night.’
    • ‘Mountain rhebuck, duiker, jackal, mongoose, porcupine and dassie now live in the Reserve.’
    • ‘They have observed that when caracal numbers in their region are moderate, that there is an increase in natural prey animals such as hares, steenbok and dassies.’
    • ‘The fur of a dassie rat is soft and silky, but there is no underfur.’

Origin

Late 18th century from Afrikaans, from South African Dutch dasje, diminutive of Dutch das ‘badger’; the fish is said to have been named because of a perceived resemblance (in its habit of frequenting rocks, or from its shy nature) to the rock hyrax.