from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In some places, a laborer employed to load and unload vessels in port; a dock-hand; a longshoreman; a stevedore.
  • noun A militiaman.
  • noun In zoology, one who lumps several described species, genera, etc., in one: opposed to splitter.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Zoöl.) The European eelpout; -- called also lumpen.
  • noun One who lumps.
  • noun A laborer who is employed to load or unload vessels when in harbor.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The European eelpout; -- called also lumpen.
  • noun Extra labor hired by a trucking company to assist a driver and/or customer unloading or loading a truck.
  • noun biology, linguistics A scientist in one of various fields who prefers to keep categories such as species or dialects together in larger groups.

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

  • noun a laborer who loads and unloads vessels in a port
  • noun a taxonomist who classifies organisms into large groups on the basis of major characteristics


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

lump +‎ -er


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  • Are you a lumper, mollusque?

    May 15, 2009

  • I'm more on the splitter side, bilby. In my experience if a splitter is wrong, it's still possible to tell what was meant. If a lumper is wrong, it's hard to tell what was meant.

    For example, let's suppose you think there are three species of snails, A, B, C, in a genus, but a splitter decides there are five, A, B, C, D, E. You can map the splitter's concepts to your own: perhaps A = A, B|D = B, C|E = C. If a lumper says there is only one species A, you don't know if only A was present, or also B and C.

    DNA sequencing techniques have shown that splitters are right more often than lumpers.

    May 16, 2009

  • I too, mollusque, for reasons less noble (pedantry, that is).

    May 16, 2009

  • I love mollusque.

    May 16, 2009