protist

noun
pro·​tist | \ ˈprō-(ˌ)tist How to pronounce protist (audio) \

Definition of protist

: any of a diverse taxonomic group and especially a kingdom (Protista synonym Protoctista) of eukaryotic organisms that are unicellular and sometimes colonial or less often multicellular and that typically include the protozoans, most algae, and often some fungi (such as slime molds)

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Other Words from protist

protistan \ prō-​ˈti-​stən How to pronounce protistan (audio) \ adjective or noun

Examples of protist in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

As an undergraduate, her textbooks taught there were five kingdoms of life: plants, animals, bacteria, fungi and protists. Tony Briscoe, chicagotribune.com, "Minuscule microbes wield enormous power over the Great Lakes. But many species remain a mystery.," 5 July 2019 Ernst Haeckel’s intention was to make the natural forms of elusive organisms accessible to artists, and supply them with a new visual vocabulary of protists, mollusks, trilobites, siphonophores, fungi, and echinoderms. The New York Review of Books, "Lucy Jakub," 16 Dec. 2018 Yana Eglit is a Dalhousie graduate student dedicated to discovering novel lineages of the single-cell eukaryotes called protists. Quanta Magazine, "What a Newfound Kingdom Means for the Tree of Life," 11 Dec. 2018 Nicole King, a biologist at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, found a revealing window on those ancient transitions: choanoflagellates, a group of living protists that seems on the cusp of making the leap to multicellularity. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "The momentous transition to multicellular life may not have been so hard after all," 28 June 2018 The scientific name is derived from the twisting motion that helps the protist swim. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Meet the top 10 new species of 2018," 23 May 2018 The remainder is distributed among fungi, archaea, protists, animals and viruses, in that order. The Economist, "A planetary census puts humans in their place," 24 May 2018 Researchers discovered the protist living on a brain coral in a tropical aquarium at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. Sean Greene, latimes.com, "A rare great ape, a 130-foot-tall tree and an extinct marsupial lion make the Top 10 New Species list for 2018," 23 May 2018 The organism propels itself with a whip-like tail, called a flagella, and uses unusual harpoon-like structures to stun and consume other protists. Sean Greene, latimes.com, "A rare great ape, a 130-foot-tall tree and an extinct marsupial lion make the Top 10 New Species list for 2018," 23 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of protist

1873, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for protist

New Latin Protista, from Greek, neuter plural of prōtistos very first, primal, from superlative of prōtos first — more at proto-

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Statistics for protist

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for protist

The first known use of protist was in 1873

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More Definitions for protist

protist

noun
pro·​tist | \ ˈprō-tist How to pronounce protist (audio) \

Kids Definition of protist

: any member of the kingdom of mostly single-celled organisms (as protozoans and algae) that have a nucleus and sometimes form colonies

protist

noun
pro·​tist | \ ˈprōt-əst, ˈprō-ˌtist How to pronounce protist (audio) \

Medical Definition of protist

: any of a diverse taxonomic group and especially a kingdom (Protista synonym Protoctista) of eukaryotic organisms that are unicellular and sometimes colonial or less often multicellular and that typically include the protozoans, most algae, and often some fungi (as slime molds)

Other Words from protist

protistan \ prō-​ˈtis-​tən How to pronounce protistan (audio) \ adjective or noun

More from Merriam-Webster on protist

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with protist

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about protist

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