a. A large carnivorous feline mammal (Panthera tigris) of Asia, having a tawny coat with transverse black stripes.
b. Any of various similar wild felines, such as the jaguar, mountain lion, or lynx.
2. A person regarded as aggressive, audacious, or fierce.
[Middle English tigre, from Old English tigras, tigers, and from Old French tigre, both from Latin tigris, from Greek, of Iranian origin; see steig- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
(click for a larger image)tiger
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.