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

  • adj. Of, relating to, or exhibiting melanism.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or affected with melanosis; melanotic.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of, relating to, or exhibiting melanism.
  • n. A creature, such as a moth, exhibiting melanism.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Melanotic.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to the black-haired races.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Black; dark: as, a melanic race.
  • Of or pertaining to melanosis.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • There is no actual evidence that the melanic trait existed at any frequency above the background mutation rate before that.

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  • … The idea arose, therefore, that the melanic forms wer in some way chaned in regard to their metabolism, and that this enabled them to feed on the poisoned food of the industrial districts.

    Welcome Article on Natural Selection in Peppered Moths - The Panda's Thumb

  • … We tried to see whether the dark individuals were larger or stronger, but with negative ressults, though these individuals were more viable in breeding, an experience also reported by Harrison 1920 for British melanic moths.

    Welcome Article on Natural Selection in Peppered Moths - The Panda's Thumb

  • Why were all such Sunday School rooms bile green, with those heinous Masonite tables and mustard-colored bulletin boards and the selfsame melanic upright piano with a plastic Jesus on top?

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  • For example, every sportsman must have noticed that the somewhat rare melanic variety of the common rabbit will crouch as steadily as the normal brownish-gray type, notwithstanding that, owing to its abnormal colour, a "nigger-rabbit" thus renders itself the most conspicuous object in the landscape.

    Darwin, and After Darwin (Vol. 1 and 3, of 3) An Exposition of the Darwinian Theory and a Discussion of Post-Darwinian Questions

  • It is not impossible that some definite varieties, such as the melanic form of the jaguar and the bridled variety of the guillemot are due to this cause; but from their very nature such varieties are unstable, and are continually reproduced in varying proportions from the parent forms.

    Darwinism (1889)

  • Hawkins K, Bermingham E, Ricklefs RE, Mundy NI (2001) The molecular basis of an avian plumage polymorphism in the wild: a melanocortin-1-receptor point mutation is perfectly associated with the melanic plumage morph of the bananaquit, Coereba flaveola.

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  • Unlike other lepidopteran melanic larvae mutations, this one is autosomal recessive and does not appear to involve a deficiency in JH titers.

    ScienceBlogs Channel : Life Science

  • Research on several species of melanic lepidopteran larvae have found that low levels of circulating juvenile hormone (JH) titers are associated with a melanic phenotype, suggesting that genetic changes in the JH biosynthetic pathway give rise to increased deposition of melanin granules in the cuticle in this group.

    ScienceBlogs Channel : Life Science

  • This rise in frequency, if spread evenly over ~34 generations, would require an average increase by a factor of ~1. 36 per generation and is thus comparable to the most extreme selective events observed in natural populations, such as the spread of melanic moths in

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  • Black; very dark. (from Phrontistery)

    May 23, 2008