ETYM Perh. from French dormir to sleep (Prov. Eng. dorm to doze) + Eng. mouse; or perh. changed from French dormeuse, fem., a sleeper, though not found in the sense of a dormouse.
Small rodent, of the family Gliridae, with a hairy tail. There are about ten species, living in Europe, Asia, and Africa. They are arboreal (live in trees) and nocturnal, and they hibernate during winter in cold regions.
The fat or edible dormouse Glis glis lives in continental Europe and is 30 cm/12 in long including its tail.
It was a delicacy at Roman feasts.
Small furry-tailed squirrel-like Old World rodent that becomes torpid in cold weather.