softshell

noun soft·shell \ ˈsȯf(t)-ˌshel \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of softshell

:any of a family (Trionychidae) of freshwater carnivorous turtles that have sharp claws and mandibles and a flat round shell covered with soft leathery skin instead of with horny plates called also soft-shelled turtle

Recent Examples of softshell from the Web

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

Illustration of softshell

First Known Use of softshell

1830


soft-shell

adjective \ ˈsȯf(t)-ˌshel \
variants: or soft-shelled play \ˈsȯf(t)-ˈsheld\

Definition of soft-shell

:having a soft or fragile shell especially as a result of recent shedding
  • soft-shell crabs

First Known Use of soft-shell

1611


SOFTSHELL Defined for English Language Learners

soft-shell

adjective

Definition of soft-shell for English Language Learners

  • : having a shell that is soft or easily broken


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