tortoiseshell

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tortoiseshell 

Material used in the manufacture of spectacle frames. It is obtained from the shell plates of the hawksbill turtle. See plastic spectacle frame; spectacles.

tortoiseshell

a coat color in cats consisting of a mixture of black and shades of red to yellow, usually broken into large patches. The color can be found in a variety of cats, both long- and shorthaired, and specific breeds, such as Burmese. Tortoiseshell-and-white is another variety, called calico in the USA and chintz in the United Kingdom. Because the genes for black and orange (including shades from red to yellow) are carried on an X chromosome, but not the same one, only females can carry both colors. Males from similar breeding are either orange or black. There are isolated examples of tortoiseshell or tortoiseshell-and-white male cats, but almost all are sterile due to the chromosomal abnormality of XXY. These are considered models of the human condition, klinefelter's syndrome. Rarely, the phenomenon may be attributed to somatic mutations, crossing over of chromosomes or mosaicism.
References in periodicals archive ?
Among the items that seem to denote a special status were tortoise-shells, the plastron and carapace of the tortoise being placed together or severally in graves by the head, foot or thigh of the dead person and often accompanied by small pebbles.
says its new Splash polymer technology can be used to imitate marble, wood, pearlescent, tortoise-shell, and many other high-end appearances in injection molded parts.
It's a "big tortoise-shell cat," a sterile male (Bennett 487).
Beckham, 36, made the most of the sunshine in a T-shirt and shorts, accessorising with tortoise-shell Wayferers and a backwards baseball cap.
Teddy has tortoise-shell markings and loves to play and cuddle with both kittens and people.
Gabrielle, the dark tortoise-shell queen featured last week, has now been offered a home.
50, M&S Yellow bustier, pounds 28, Topshop; turquoise embroidered skirt, pounds 75, Monsoon; White and black trim jacket, pounds 75, Autograph by M&S; white shorts, pounds 25, Topshop; silver peep-toe shoes, pounds 99, Lisa Kay Black and white beaded dress, pounds 50, Next; cream patent shoes, pounds 25, Redherring @ Debenhams; Red and cream floral dress, pounds 50, Next; cream patent shoes, pounds 25, Redherring @ Debenhams; brown wide-brim hat, pounds 30, Accessorize; tortoise-shell sunglasses, pounds 15, TK Maxx; red pashmina, pounds 18, Julien Macdonald @ Debenhams.
Then she helped hubby Matthew Broderick pick out a black aviator Diesel for his ``sexy'' pair and a tortoise-shell Alexander McQueen wrap-around for his ``fun'' pair.
She first knew something was not quite right when her eight-year-old tortoise-shell cat Ziggy came scurrying towards the house.
The style, also available in matchstick, grass and tortoise-shell, is interwoven with fabric and has an optional privacy liner.
The tortoise-shell kitten was struggling to survive on the streets and had narrowly escaped being drowned.
How the five-year-old tortoise-shell cat ended up in the back of a van with the bed remains a mystery.