or·​nith·​is·​chi·​an | \ ˌȯr-nə-ˈthi-skē-ən How to pronounce ornithischian (audio) \

Definition of ornithischian

: any of an order (Ornithischia) of herbivorous dinosaurs (such as a stegosaurus) that have the pubis of the pelvis rotated backward to a position parallel and close to the ischium — compare saurischian

Other Words from ornithischian

ornithischian adjective

Examples of ornithischian in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The dinosaur, first described in 2015 as a bizarre, herbivorous theropod, is actually a primitive ornithischian, according to the study — a placement that would strengthen the authors’ argument for rewriting the entire family tree. Jon Tennant, Discover Magazine, 24 Jan. 2018 But the saurischians and ornithischians are the two main branches with more specific lineages arrayed along them. Brian Switek, Smithsonian, 8 Dec. 2017 The second group, ornithischians, have pelvic structures superficially similar to modern birds, and include classic armored dinos like Stegasaurus and Triceratops. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, 24 Mar. 2017 Not to mention that the new analysis brings up the question of why theropods and sauropods share air sacs that lightened their skeletons and yet ornithischians Brian Switek, Scientific American Blog Network, 15 May 2017 The ornithischians, by contrast, included dinosaurs like Stegosaurus and Camptosaurus. Brian Switek, Scientific American Blog Network, 15 May 2017 However, since 2002 paleontologists have unearthed a couple of other ornithischians with primitive bristle or furlike feathers. Gemma Tarlach, Discover Magazine, 10 Apr. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of ornithischian

1888, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ornithischian

New Latin Ornithischia, from ornith- + ischium

Learn More About ornithischian

Time Traveler for ornithischian

Time Traveler

The first known use of ornithischian was in 1888

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near ornithischian




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for ornithischian

Cite this Entry

“Ornithischian.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ornithischian. Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on ornithischian

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about ornithischian


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!