raph·​ide | \ ˈra-ˌfīd How to pronounce raphide (audio) \
plural raphides\ ˈra-​ˌfīdz How to pronounce raphides (audio) , ˈra-​fə-​ˌdēz \

Definition of raphide

: any of the needle-shaped crystals usually of calcium oxalate that develop as metabolic by-products in plant cells

Examples of raphide in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

These contain crystals of calcium carbonate called raphides, which take the form of microscopic needles. Kenneth Setzer, miamiherald, "Some of South Florida's most popular plants may be toxic to pets," 14 June 2018

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

First Known Use of raphide

circa 1842, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for raphide

French & New Latin; French raphide, from New Latin raphides, plural, from Greek rhaphides, plural of rhaphid-, rhaphis needle, from rhaptein

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about raphide

Statistics for raphide

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for raphide

The first known use of raphide was circa 1842

See more words from the same year

Comments on raphide

What made you want to look up raphide? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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