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gan·​oid ˈga-ˌnȯid How to pronounce ganoid (audio)
: of, having, or being fish scales consisting of bone and an outer shiny layer resembling enamel
also : relating to or being fish with ganoid scales


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: a fish (such as a sturgeon or gar) with ganoid scales

Word History



after French Ganoïdes, order name (latinized as Ganoidei), from Greek gános "brightness, sheen, gladness, joy," (abstract noun derivative from gánymai, ganýnai "to brighten up, be glad," going back to Indo-European *gh2-n-u- derivative of *geh2u̯- "be glad") + -oïdes, plural of -oïde -oid entry 1

Note: Indo-European *geh2u̯- "be glad" may also be the base of Latin gaudēre "to be glad" (see joy entry 1). The order name Ganoïdes was introduced by the elder Louis agassiz for fish with such scales in Recherches sur les poissons fossiles (Neuchatel, 1833-43).


after French Ganoïdes or New Latin Ganoidei, order names — more at ganoid entry 1

First Known Use


circa 1847, in the meaning defined above


circa 1839, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ganoid was circa 1839

Dictionary Entries Near ganoid

Cite this Entry

“Ganoid.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

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