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Glossary of Biological Terms
beginning with letter S
Browse the Biological Glossary
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scaly Tweet Definition of scaly Like Definition of scaly on Facebook
adjective
  1. Covered or abounding with scales; as, a scaly fish.
  2. Resembling scales, laminae, or layers.
    1. (South African) Mean; low; as, a scaly fellow.
  3. Composed of scales lying over each other; as, a scaly bulb; covered with scales; as, a scaly stem.
science Tweet Definition of science Like Definition of science on Facebook
noun
  1. The collective discipline of study or learning acquired through the scientific method; the sum of knowledge gained from such methods and discipline.
    • 1951 January 1, w:Albert Einstein, Albert Einstein, letter to Maurice Solovine, as published in Letters to Solovine (1993)
    • : I have found no better expression than "religious" for confidence in the rational nature of reality ... Whenever this feeling is absent, degenerates into uninspired empiricism.
      1. A particular discipline or branch of learning, especially one dealing with measurable or systematic principles rather than intuition or natural ability.
      Of course in my opinion Social Studies is more of a than an art.
      1. (context, biblical) The fact of knowing something; knowledge or understanding of a truth:
    • 1611, w:King James Version of the Bible, King James Version of the Bible, s:Bible (King James)/1 Timothy, I Timothy 6:20-21
    • : O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding vain and profane babblings, and oppositions of falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.
      1. (archaic) knowledge, Knowledge gained through study or practice; mastery of a particular discipline or area.
      I have much concerning fire and smoke.
scientific Tweet Definition of scientific Like Definition of scientific on Facebook
adjective
  1. Of, or having to do with science.
  2. Having the quality of being derived from, or consistent with, the scientific method.
scientific method Tweet Definition of scientific method Like Definition of scientific method on Facebook
noun (generally referred to in the definite, as the scientific method)
  1. (science) A method of discovering knowledge about the natural world based in making falsifiable predictions (hypotheses), testing them empirically, and developing peer-reviewed theories that best explain the known data.
segmental Tweet Definition of segmental Like Definition of segmental on Facebook
adjective
  1. of, relating to, or constructed from segments
selection Tweet Definition of selection Like Definition of selection on Facebook
noun
  1. The process or act of selecting.
The large number of good candidates made selection difficult.
  1. Something selected.
My final selection was a 1934 Chateau Lafitte.
  1. A variety of items taken from a larger collection.
I've brought a selection of fine cheeses to go with your wine.
  1. A musical piece.
For my next selection, I'll play Happy Birthday in F-sharp minor.
septa Tweet Definition of septa Like Definition of septa on Facebook
noun
  1. (plural of, septum)
serrated Tweet Definition of serrated Like Definition of serrated on Facebook
adjective
  1. saw-like.
That knife has a blade.
  1. Having a row of sharp or tooth-like projections.
Maple leaves have edges.
setaceous Tweet Definition of setaceous Like Definition of setaceous on Facebook
adjective
  1. of, relating to, or resembling a bristle or bristles; bristly
sheath Tweet Definition of sheath Like Definition of sheath on Facebook
noun (sheaths)
  1. A scabbard; a holster for a sword.
  2. Anything that has a similar shape to a scabbard for a sword that is for the purpose of holding an object that is longer than it is wide; a case.
  3. A tight-fitting dress.
  4. A condom
verb (sheathes, sheathing, sheathed)
  1. To put an object (especially a weapon, in particular, a sword) into its sheath.
smooth Tweet Definition of smooth Like Definition of smooth on Facebook
adjective (smoother, smoothest)
  1. Having a texture that lacks friction. Not rough.
    • 2005, w:Plato, Plato, Sophist. Translation by Lesley Brown. w:Stephanus pagination, 229e.
    • : Teaching that's done by talking seems to have one rough path and another part which is smoother.
      1. Without difficulty, problems, or unexpected consequences or incidents.
      We hope for a transition to the new system.
space biology Tweet Definition of space biology Like Definition of space biology on Facebook
noun
  1. (biology) Any of various biological sciences that deal with living things in a space environment
sphenic Tweet Definition of sphenic Like Definition of sphenic on Facebook
adjective
  1. shaped like a wedge
splitter Tweet Definition of splitter Like Definition of splitter on Facebook
noun
  1. One who, or that which, splits.
  2. (colloquial) A scientist in one of various fields who prefers to split categories such as species or dialects up into smaller groups.
  3. In wikipedia:Baseball, baseball, a splitfinger fastball (a type of pitch).
spurious Tweet Definition of spurious Like Definition of spurious on Facebook
adjective
  1. false, not authentic, not genuine
  2. (archaic) bastardly, illegitimate
squamous Tweet Definition of squamous Like Definition of squamous on Facebook
adjective
  1. Covered with, made of, or resembling scales; scaly.
    • 1658, Sir Thomas Browne, The Garden of Cyrus (Folio Society 2007), page 180
    • :In the heads of Scabius, Knapweed, and the elegant Jacea Pinea, and in the Scaly composure of the Oak-Rose, which some years most aboundeth.
    • 1933, w:H. P. Lovecraft, H. P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald, s:Out of the Aeons, Out of the Aeons
    • :I might call it gigantic - tentacled - proboscidian - octopus-eyed - semi-amorphous - plastic - partly and partly rugose - ugh!
    • 1973, Kyril Bonfiglioli, Don't Point That Thing at Me (Penguin 2001), page 133
    • :We spread the papers on the least section of the floor and lay down; the smell was not so bad at ground level.
    • 2001, w:Charles Stross, Charles Stross, The Atrocity Archive (trade paperback 2006), page 66
    • :(And we'll never find out whether the last thought to pass through the mind of the captain of the Thresher was, "It's and rugose," or simply, "It's !")
      1. (anatomy) Of or pertaining to the squamosal bone; squamosal
stereotropism Tweet Definition of stereotropism Like Definition of stereotropism on Facebook
noun
  1. thigmatropism
Stinger Tweet Definition of Stinger Like Definition of Stinger on Facebook
noun (wikipedia, FIM-92 Stinger)
  1. a portable infra-red homing surface-to-air missile
stratum Tweet Definition of stratum Like Definition of stratum on Facebook
noun (strat, a)
  1. One of several parallel horizontal layers of material arranged one on top of another
  2. (geology) A layer of sedimentary rock having approximately the same composition throughout
  3. Any of the regions of the atmosphere, such as the stratosphere, that occur as layers
  4. (biology) A layer of tissue
  5. A class of society composed of people with similar social, cultural, or economic status
structural Tweet Definition of structural Like Definition of structural on Facebook
adjective
  1. of, relating to, or having structure
  2. used in building
subclass Tweet Definition of subclass Like Definition of subclass on Facebook
noun (subclass, es)
  1. (taxonomy) A rank directly below class
  2. (computing) In object-oriented programming, an object class derived from another class (its superclass) from which it inherits property, properties and methods, and usually adds some of its own.
verb (subclass, es)
  1. (context, transitive, computing) In object-oriented programming, to create a subclass of.
subdivision Tweet Definition of subdivision Like Definition of subdivision on Facebook
noun , plural: subdivisions
  1. (countable or uncountable) a division into smaller pieces of something that has already been divided; to separate something
    Subdivide the sentence into pieces and understand it a bit at a time.
  2. (countable) such a piece that has been divided
    Work on one at a time.
  3. (countable) a group of houses created by the same builder or in the same general area
    They're putting in a new out past Black Ranch Road.
subfamily Tweet Definition of subfamily Like Definition of subfamily on Facebook
noun (subfamil, ies)
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category ranking between a family and a genus; formerly called a tribe
subkingdom Tweet Definition of subkingdom Like Definition of subkingdom on Facebook
noun
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category below kingdom and above superphylum.
suborder Tweet Definition of suborder Like Definition of suborder on Facebook
noun
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category below order and above infraorder.
subphylum Tweet Definition of subphylum Like Definition of subphylum on Facebook
noun (subphyl, a)
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category below phylum and above class
subspecies Tweet Definition of subspecies Like Definition of subspecies on Facebook
noun (plural subspecies)
  1. (context, biology, taxonomy) A rank in the classification of organisms, below species
  2. (context, biology, taxonomy) a taxon at that rank
In zoology and bacteriology, is the only rank below that of species which is formally accepted by the relevant nomenclatural Code.
subspecific Tweet Definition of subspecific Like Definition of subspecific on Facebook
adjective
  1. (biology) pertaining to a subspecies. Usage as a formal term of nomenclature: only in zoology and bacteriology, not in botany. Informal usage is not restricted.
superclass Tweet Definition of superclass Like Definition of superclass on Facebook
noun
  1. (taxonomy) A taxon ranking below a phylum and above a class
  2. (computing) (in object-oriented computing) A high-level class that passes attributes and methods down the hierarchy to subclasses
superfamily Tweet Definition of superfamily Like Definition of superfamily on Facebook
noun (superfamil, ies)
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category above family and below order (and its subdivisions)
superorder Tweet Definition of superorder Like Definition of superorder on Facebook
noun
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category below subclass and above order.
superphylum Tweet Definition of superphylum Like Definition of superphylum on Facebook
noun (superphyl, a)
  1. (taxonomy) A taxonomic category above phylum and below subkingdom
survival of the fittest Tweet Definition of survival of the fittest Like Definition of survival of the fittest on Facebook
verb
  1. (biology) by natural selection those individuals in a population which are fittest, best fitted will survive and produce progeny. Term created by philosopher w:Herbert Spencer, Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) in 1864.
symmetry Tweet Definition of symmetry Like Definition of symmetry on Facebook
noun (uncountable)
  1. Exact correspondence on either side of a dividing line, plane, center or axis.
  2. The satisfying arrangement of a balanced distribution of the elements of a whole.
synonym Tweet Definition of synonym Like Definition of synonym on Facebook
noun
  1. A word or phrase that has a meaning the same as, or very close to, that of another word or phrase.
Happy is a of joyful.
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  1. (rare) One of two or more words with the same meaning but in different languages; a heteronym. (This is wrong - isn't it. Heteronyms are words that are spelled alike, but have different meanings
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  1. (zoology) In zoological nomenclature, any of the formal names applying to a particular taxon, including the correct name (the valid name), which will be the senior synonym.
  2. (botany) In botanical nomenclature, any of the other names also applying to a particular taxon.
synonymy Tweet Definition of synonymy Like Definition of synonymy on Facebook
noun (synonymies)
  1. The quality of being synonymous; sameness of meaning.
  2. A system of synonyms.
  3. (botany) The collective synonyms (all the names referring to a particular taxon, except the correct name)
  4. (botany) The state of not being a correct name, of being a synonym
::In 1924 this name was reduced to synonymy.
  1. (zoology) The collective synonyms (all the names referring to the same taxon, including the correct name)
synthesis Tweet Definition of synthesis Like Definition of synthesis on Facebook
noun (syntheses)
  1. the formation of something complex or coherent by combining simpler things
  2. (chemistry) the reaction of elements or compounds to form more complex compounds
  3. (logic) deduction from the general to the particular
  4. (philosophy) the combination of thesis and antithesis
  5. (Military) In intelligence usage, the examining and combining of processed information with other information and intelligence for final interpretation; (JP 1-02).
systematic Tweet Definition of systematic Like Definition of systematic on Facebook
adjective
  1. of, relating to, or being a system
  2. carried out using a planned, ordered procedure
  3. methodical, regular and orderly
  4. of, or relating to taxonomic classification

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