Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A chitinous or calcareous plate or similar part of an invertebrate, especially one of the hard outer plates forming part of the exoskeleton of an arthropod.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One of the elements which by union or coalescence form the skeleton of a coral.
  • noun In zoology:
  • noun Any separate skeletal element or definite hard part of the integument of arthropods; a piece of the chitinous skeleton or crust, as of an insect, in any way distinguished from other parts.
  • noun A sclerodermatous spicule in the substance of a polyp, especially of an alcyonarian.
  • noun A sponge-spicule; a sclere.

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

  • noun (Zoöl.) A hard chitinous or calcareous process or corpuscle, especially a spicule of the Alcyonaria.

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

  • noun biology A hardened body part, especially in arthropod exoskeletons.

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

  • noun hard plate or element of the exoskeleton of some arthropods

Etymologies

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