noun Chae·top·ter·us

Definition of Chaetopterus

  1. :  a genus (the type of the small family Chaetopteridae) of large marine polychaete worms that inhabit parchmentlike U-shaped tubes open at both ends, are highly bioluminescent, and have one pair of large lateral appendages and several broad fanlike membranous folds by which they maintain a current of water within the tube

Love words? You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Join MWU now and get access to America’s largest dictionary, with:

  • 300,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Origin and Etymology of chaetopterus

New Latin, from chaet- + -pterus

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up Chaetopterus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a trip made at another's expense

Get Word of the Day daily email!