ar·​thro·​pod | \ˈär-thrə-ˌpäd \

Definition of arthropod 

: any of a phylum (Arthropoda) of invertebrate animals (such as insects, arachnids, and crustaceans) that have a segmented body and jointed appendages, a usually chitinous exoskeleton molted at intervals, and a dorsal anterior brain connected to a ventral chain of ganglia

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Other Words from arthropod

arthropod adjective
arthropodan \är-​ˈthrä-​pə-​dən \ adjective

Examples of arthropod in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Like its adult counterparts, the little arthropod had a spiny raptorial appendage used for grasping prey and the radiodontan’s characteristic circular mouth filled with sharp teeth. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "This Prehistoric Sea Creature Had Fanged, Killer Babies," 11 June 2018 Arachnids different from insects, which are arthropods. Mark Feeney,, "Before there was ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ . . .," 28 June 2018 Modern arthropods begin developing with a single bundle of nerve cells above their gut. National Geographic, "Half-Billion-Year-Old Fossil Brains Found in Ancient Predator," 9 Mar. 2018 These arthropods can be identified by their fuzzy, striped exterior and their 15 pairs of legs, which allow them to travel at speeds of 16 inches per second. Margeaux Sippell,, "It has 30 legs and hides in your basement in summer. Don’t kill it," 26 June 2018 In 2013, just a year after scientists had initiated the eradication of the invaders, native seedlings had increased 130 percent, and populations of arthropods, like insects and crabs, skyrocketed over 350 percent. Matt Simon, WIRED, "Rats! Coral Reefs Aren't Getting the Bird Poop They Need," 11 July 2018 That is in contradistinction to Cambrian fossils, among which are found representatives of all the main animal groups (annelids, arthropods, brachiopods, chordates, cnidarians, echinoderms, molluscs and so on) that are around today. The Economist, "The Cambrian explosion was caused by a lack of oxygen, not an abundance," 7 June 2018 Many arthropods also fluoresce thanks to the outermost layer that that produces the glow, Wired previously reported. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "Puffin Beaks Are Fluorescent, and They’re Not the Only Ones," 9 Apr. 2018 That’s advice from North Carolina State University entomologist Matt Bertone and his fellow researchers who recently conducted a visual survey of 50 North Carolina homes to study the arthropods living under their roofs. Fiza Pirani, ajc, "Why you shouldn’t kill that spider in your home," 30 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'arthropod.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of arthropod

1857, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for arthropod

New Latin Arthropoda, from arthr- + Greek pod-, pous foot — more at foot

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Statistics for arthropod

Last Updated

14 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for arthropod

The first known use of arthropod was in 1857

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More Definitions for arthropod


ar·​thro·​pod | \ˈär-thrə-ˌpäd \

Kids Definition of arthropod

: any of a large group of animals (as crabs, insects, and spiders) with jointed limbs and a body made up of segments

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More from Merriam-Webster on arthropod

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with arthropod

Spanish Central: Translation of arthropod

Nglish: Translation of arthropod for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about arthropod

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living or existing for a long time

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