E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Ermine or Hermine.
Littré derives the word from Armenia, and says it is the Pontic rat mentioned by Pliny; if so, the better spelling would be Armine. Prof. Skeat derives the word from the French hermine, through harmo, the ermine, stoat, or weazel. The ermine is technically called the Mustela erminea.