den·​ti·​cle | \ ˈden-ti-kəl How to pronounce denticle (audio) \

Definition of denticle

: a conical pointed projection (such as a small tooth)

Examples of denticle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web On individual sharks, denticle patterns and sizes can vary. Joanna Klein, National Geographic, 28 July 2020 The shark skin denticles can flex at angles more than 40 degrees from its body—but only in the direction of reversing flow (i.e., from tail to nose). Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 13 Mar. 2020 But scientists are now concerned that even durable denticles have met their match: ocean acidification. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, 21 Dec. 2019 One study found that shark denticles are responsible for an up to 12 percent increase in swimming speed. Rachel Nuwer, Scientific American, 19 Dec. 2019 In free-swimming sharks like the great white, denticles account for up to 12 percent of their swimming speed. Matt Simon, Wired, 19 Dec. 2019 So Auerswald and his colleagues decided to simulate the effects of acidification on the denticles of puffadder shysharks (Haploblepharus edwardsii) in the lab. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, 21 Dec. 2019 But the longer the sharks spent bathing in the harsh liquid, the worse off their denticles were. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, 21 Dec. 2019 These skin denticles decrease drag in the water and help sharks glide more quietly. Lauren Kent, CNN, 28 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'denticle.' 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 denticle

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for denticle

Middle English, from Latin denticulus, diminutive of dent-, dens

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Time Traveler for denticle

Time Traveler

The first known use of denticle was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Denticle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for denticle


den·​ti·​cle | \ ˈdent-i-kəl How to pronounce denticle (audio) \

Medical Definition of denticle

More from Merriam-Webster on denticle Encyclopedia article about denticle


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