nau·​pli·​us ˈnȯ-plē-əs How to pronounce nauplius (audio)
plural nauplii ˈnȯ-plē-ˌī How to pronounce nauplius (audio)
: a crustacean larva in usually the first stage after leaving the egg and with three pairs of appendages, a median eye, and little or no segmentation

Word History


New Latin, from Latin, a shellfish, from Greek nauplios

First Known Use

1836, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nauplius was in 1836

Dictionary Entries Near nauplius

Cite this Entry

“Nauplius.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

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