Aysheaia

noun Ay·shea·ia \ ī-ˈshā-ə \

Definition of Aysheaia

paleontology
:a genus of soft-bodied marine invertebrates known from fossils of the Cambrian period that are thought to be ancestral to the velvet worms (phylum Onychophora)
  • A marine onychophoran from the Cambrian would be a creature of supreme evolutionary importance—and Aysheaia, generally so interpreted, became a hero of the Burgess.
  • —Stephen Jay GouldWonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History1989

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Origin and Etymology of aysheaia

borrowed from New Latin, from Ayshea, erroneously for Aysha (later Ayesha), peak in British Columbia near where the fossils were found + -ia-ia


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