Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An animal or plant exhibiting hermaphroditism.
  • n. Something that is a combination of disparate or contradictory elements.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A person or thing possessing two opposing qualities.
  • n. A hermaphrodite brig.
  • adj. Having gender-ambiguous sexual organs, typically including both types of gonads, in one individual or organism.
  • adj. Combining two opposing qualities.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Including, or being of, both sexes.
  • n. An individual which has the attributes of both male and female, or which unites in itself the two sexes; an animal or plant having the parts of generation of both sexes, as when a flower contains both the stamens and pistil within the same calyx, or on the same receptacle. In some cases reproduction may take place without the union of the distinct individuals. In the animal kingdom true hermaphrodites are found only among the invertebrates. See Illust. in Appendix, under Helminths.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A human being in whom the sexual characteristics of both sexes are to some extent, really or apparently, combined; also, one of the higher animals which is similarly deformed.
  • n. One of those lower animals which normally possess the parts of generation of both the male and the female, so that reproduction can take place without the union of two individuals.
  • n. In botany, a flower that contains both the stamen and the pistil perfectly developed, or the male and female organs of generation, within the same floral envelop or on the same receptacle. See perfect.
  • Same as hermaphroditic.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. of animal or plant; having both male female reproductive organs
  • n. one having both male and female sexual characteristics and organs; at birth an unambiguous assignment of male or female cannot be made

Etymologies

Middle English hermofrodite, from Medieval Latin hermofrodītus, from Latin Hermaphrodītus, Hermaphroditus, hermaphrodite; see Hermaphroditus.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Hermaphroditos, the mythical son of Hermes and Aphrodite, possessing both male and female qualities. (Wiktionary)

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