clasp·​er | \ ˈkla-spər How to pronounce clasper (audio) \

Definition of clasper

: a male copulatory structure:
a : one of a pair of external anal processes of an insect that are used to grasp a female
b : one of a pair of organs that are extensions of the pelvic fins of cartilaginous fishes

Examples of clasper in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The discovery of clasper limbs in a fossil suggests that some species of the ancient arthropods reproduced much like modern horseshoe crabs. New York Times, 6 May 2022 The structure and placement of these clasper-like appendages on the trilobite are slightly different from those of living horseshoe crabs. New York Times, 6 May 2022 Male sharks internally fertilize females with one of their two sperm-transfer organs, called claspers. National Geographic, 27 May 2017 Claspers are penis-like organs male sharks use to transfer seminal fluid into the vent of a female. National Geographic, 14 Jan. 2017 In some species, the claspers are held in place by spiny projections. National Geographic, 14 Jan. 2017 In males the pelvic claspers, used in mating, glow. David Gruber, National Geographic, 25 Apr. 2016 See More

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

First Known Use of clasper

circa 1847, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for clasper

Time Traveler

The first known use of clasper was circa 1847

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Dictionary Entries Near clasper



clasp knife

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Statistics for clasper

Last Updated

31 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Clasper.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on clasper

Britannica English: Translation of clasper for Arabic Speakers


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