You searched for: “testudines
testudines (pl)
1. A genus of tortoises which formerly included a large number of diverse forms, but is now restricted to certain terrestrial species; such as, the European land tortoise (Testudo Graeca) and the gopher of the Southern United States.
2. From Roman antiquity, covers or screens which bodies of troops formed with their shields or targets, by holding them over their heads when standing close to each other.

These covers resembled the back of tortoises, and served to shelter the men from darts, stones, and other missiles. Similar defenses were sometimes formed of boards and moved on wheels.

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