Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis), is a cud-chewing, hoofed mammal, it
forms with the okapi, the family Giraffidae (order Artiodactyla). To the
Romans, the giraffe was "camelopardalis," ("camel marked
like a leopard"), a term that survived in English as "camelopard."
The word "giraffe" comes from the Arabic zaràfa. As a
verb it means "to jump" or "to hurry," leading to
the noun "one who walks swiftly."
It has also been traced to an Ethiopia word that denotes "graceful
one." But its primary derivation, in the opinion of linguistic authority,
stems from a source meaning "assemblage," as in assemblage of
The Greeks were more specific: they contributed its scientific name,
camelopardalis (or the more common, camelopard), which literally describes
a camel's body wearing a leopard's coat.