parallel evolution


: the independent development of similar traits or features (as of body structure or behavior) in different species or lineages that have common ancestry and that typically occupy similar environments or ecological niches : parallelism sense 5 compare convergent evolution, divergent evolution

Examples of parallel evolution in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Variants continually compete in a veritable survival of the fittest, acquiring the same or similar mutations through a form of parallel evolution known as convergent evolution. Erin Prater, Fortune Well, 19 Dec. 2023 Hung traces the parallel evolution of Beijing’s determination to make Hong Kong’s people accept assimilation into China and the local development of a proud, separate identity. Andrew J. Nathan, Foreign Affairs, 19 Apr. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'parallel evolution.' 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

1888, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of parallel evolution was in 1888

Dictionary Entries Near parallel evolution

Cite this Entry

“Parallel evolution.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2024.

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