anole

noun
ano·​le | \ ə-ˈnō-lē How to pronounce anole (audio) \

Definition of anole

: any of a genus (Anolis) of arboreal American lizards (such as the green anole) of the iguana family that have a brightly colored dewlap and the ability to change color

Examples of anole in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And unlike the colorful green anole, the Texas spiny lizard keeps a low profile by blending in with its surroundings rather than sticking out. René A. Guzman, ExpressNews.com, "Texas spiny lizard not as famous as the Texas horned lizard or horny toad, but is a master of disguise with real spunk," 22 Dec. 2020 Williams’s lab had already produced several leading evolutionary biologists, and Losos figured the field of anole research was getting too crowded. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Meet Lizard Man, a reptile-loving biologist tackling some of the biggest questions in evolution," 30 July 2020 This was true across 188 different species of anole scattered across the Caribbean as well as Central and South America. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "Hurricanes Make Lizards Evolve Bigger Toe Pads," 29 Apr. 2020 Sarah Baade practically considers anole lizards her personal gardeners. René A. Guzman, ExpressNews.com, "S.A.’s Common Critters: Nothing common about the green anole, San Antonio’s most common lizard," 12 Aug. 2020 Until 20 years ago, the island was home to a single anole species. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Meet Lizard Man, a reptile-loving biologist tackling some of the biggest questions in evolution," 30 July 2020 To find out, the team used photos from natural history collections to measure a lot of lizard feet—some 188 different anole lizard species were assessed. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "Hurricanes Make Lizards Evolve Bigger Toe Pads," 29 Apr. 2020 Researchers who wear orange catch more anoles, and Australia began culling thousands of camels with helicopter snipers. Rafil Kroll-zaidi, Harper's Magazine, "Findings," 30 Mar. 2020 The behavioral ecologist studies Anolis sagrei, the brown anole, a small lizard native to the Caribbean and introduced in Florida. Ethan Baron, The Mercury News, "Lizards gone wild! UC Berkeley researcher’s ‘feminist science’ bucks male-dominated inquiry," 22 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of anole

1745, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for anole

borrowed from French anolis, borrowed from Dominica Island Carib anáoli

Note: The word apparently first appears solely in the form anolis in the anonymous Histoire naturelle et morale des Iles Antilles de l'Amerique (Rotterdam, 1658), attributed to a Huguenot clergyman named Charles de Rochefort (1605-83). In the text (p. 130-31) the word is only used in the plural, so that the singular is ambiguous, but an illustration of a single lizard on p. 135 has the caption Anolis. The form anolis, again only in the plural but without the illustration, is reproduced in an English translation by John Davies of Histoire naturelle et morale, entitled The History of the Caribby-Islands (London, 1666), p. 75 ("The Anolis are very common in all the Plantations: they are about the bigness and length of the Lizzards seen in France…"). Though it occurs but rarely, the singular is anolis in European vernaculars and Latin generally until 1750, when anoli appears in the Manuel lexique, ou Dictionnaire portatif des mots françois attributed to the Abbé Prévost. The English form anole does not seem to be attested before the 19th century. Island Carib anáoli ("ce lezart icy est gros comme un gros baston & long d'une coudée" - "this lizard is thick as a thick stick and a cubit in length") is from Raymond Breton's 1665 Dictionnaire caraïbe-français, a lexicon of Lesser Antillean Arawak.

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about anole

Time Traveler for anole

Time Traveler

The first known use of anole was in 1745

See more words from the same year

Statistics for anole

Last Updated

9 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Anole.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/anole. Accessed 16 Jan. 2021.

More from Merriam-Webster on anole

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about anole

Comments on anole

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words of Snow and Ice Quiz

  • image1037863653
  • Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!