squa·​mate ˈskwā-ˌmāt How to pronounce squamate (audio)
: any of an order (Squamata) of reptiles including the snakes and lizards and related extinct forms
squamate adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Megachirella's detailed features weren't completely discernible, and scientists didn't have a comprehensive understanding of the evolutionary timeline for squamates. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, 31 May 2018 But the previous oldest squamate fossil discovered was only about 180 million years old. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, 3 June 2018 Despite occupying so much of the Earth, scientists have found gaps in its understanding of squamate lineage. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, 3 June 2018 But, as Nicola Davis reports at The Guardian, a new study suggests that squamates actually evolved before The Great Dying and powered through this cataclysmic period. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, 1 June 2018 Genetic evidence suggests that squamates evolved in the Permian period, over 250 million years ago. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, 3 June 2018 The team also spent 400 days examining 150 specimens of other lizard-like creatures held in fossil collections around the world, and constructed the most detailed DNA family tree of living squamates. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, 1 June 2018 Lead study author Tiago Simões spent more than four years piecing together the squamate lineage. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, 31 May 2018 Squamates are snakes and lizards, and Archaeopteryx is the famous feathered fossil from Germany that represents one of the best known evolutionary links between dinosaurs and birds. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, 2 Nov. 2016 See More

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

Word History


ultimately from Late Latin squamatus scaly, from Latin squama

First Known Use

1968, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of squamate was in 1968

Dictionary Entries Near squamate

Cite this Entry

“Squamate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/squamate. Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.

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