dextral

adjective

dex·​tral ˈdek-strəl How to pronounce dextral (audio)
: of or relating to the right : inclined to the right: such as
b
of a gastropod shell : having the whorls coiling clockwise down the spire when viewed with the apex toward the observer and having the aperture situated on the right of the axis when held with the spire uppermost and with the aperture opening toward the observer compare sinistral

Examples of dextral in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The majority of snails are dextral, but sinistral forms have evolved time and time again. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 7 Dec. 2010 Dextral snails are in the majority, so a dextral snail would have a far larger supply of mates than a sinistral one. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 7 Dec. 2010 There was one exception — when coauthor and citizen scientist Philippe Thomas mated second-generation dextral offspring of French sinistral garden snails. Kristen Rogers, CNN, 2 June 2020 Six of 32 dextral snails produced 17 sinistral offspring out of 6,302 total offspring. Kristen Rogers, CNN, 2 June 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dextral.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1646, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of dextral was in 1646

Dictionary Entries Near dextral

Cite this Entry

“Dextral.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dextral. Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition

dextral

1 of 2 adjective
dex·​tral ˈdek-strəl How to pronounce dextral (audio)
: of or relating to the right
especially : right-handed
dextrally adverb

dextral

2 of 2 noun
: a person exhibiting dominance of the right hand and eye
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