stemma

noun
stem·ma | \ˈste-mə \
plural stemmata\ˈste-mə-tə \

Definition of stemma 

1 : a simple eye present in some insects

2 : a scroll (as among the ancient Romans) containing a genealogical list

3 : a tree showing the relationships of the manuscripts of a literary work

Other Words from stemma

stemmatic \ste-ˈma-tik, stə- \ adjective

First Known Use of stemma

1826, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stemma

Latin, wreath, pedigree (from the wreaths placed on ancestral images), from Greek, wreath, from stephein to crown, enwreathe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about stemma

Statistics for stemma

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stemma

The first known use of stemma was in 1826

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on stemma

See words that rhyme with stemma

Comments on stemma

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

WORD OF THE DAY

one that holds something together

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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