amphibian


amphibian
amphibian (adj.) 1630s, "having two modes of existence, of doubtful nature," from Gk. amphibia, neuter plural of amphibios "living a double life," from amphi- "of both kinds" (see AMPHI- (Cf. amphi-)) + bios "life" (see BIO- (Cf. bio-)). Formerly used by zoologists to describe all sorts of combined natures (including otters and seals), the biological sense "class of animals between fishes and reptiles that live both on land and in water" and the noun derivative both are first recorded 1835. Amphibia was used in this sense from c.1600 and has been a zoological classification since c.1819.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Amphibian — Am*phib i*an ( an), a. (Zo[ o]l.) Of or pertaining to the Amphibia; as, amphibian reptiles. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Amphibian — Am*phib i*an, n. (Zo[ o]l.) One of the Amphibia. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • amphibian — ► NOUN 1) a cold blooded animal with an aquatic larval stage and a terrestrial adult stage, e.g. a frog, toad, or newt. 2) an aircraft or vehicle that can operate on land and on water. ORIGIN Greek amphibion, from amphi both + bios life …   English terms dictionary

  • amphibian — [am fib′ē ən] n. [< ModL Amphibia < Gr amphibia, neut. pl. of amphibios: see AMPHIBIOUS] 1. any of a class (Amphibia) of coldblooded, scaleless vertebrates, consisting of frogs, toads, newts, salamanders, and caecilians, that usually begin… …   English World dictionary

  • Amphibian — taxobox name=Amphibians or amphibia fossil range= Late Devonian Recent image width = 300px image caption = Western Spadefoot Toad, Spea hammondii regnum = Animalia phylum = Chordata subphylum = Vertebrata superclassis = Tetrapoda classis =… …   Wikipedia

  • amphibian — /am fib ee euhn/, n. 1. any cold blooded vertebrate of the class Amphibia, comprising frogs and toads, newts and salamanders, and caecilians, the larvae being typically aquatic, breathing by gills, and the adults being typically semiterrestrial,… …   Universalium

  • amphibian — UK [æmˈfɪbɪən] / US noun [countable] Word forms amphibian : singular amphibian plural amphibians 1) biology an animal such as a frog or toad that lives mainly on land, but produces its eggs and develops into its adult form in water 2) a vehicle… …   English dictionary

  • amphibian — noun Etymology: ultimately from Greek amphibion amphibious being, from neuter of amphibios Date: 1835 1. an amphibious organism; especially any of a class (Amphibia) of cold blooded vertebrates (as frogs, toads, or salamanders) intermediate in… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • amphibian — [[t]æmfɪ̱biən[/t]] amphibians 1) N COUNT Amphibians are animals such as frogs and toads that can live both on land and in water. 2) N COUNT An amphibian is a vehicle which is able to move on both land and water, or an aeroplane which can land on… …   English dictionary

  • amphibian — [am fɪbɪən] noun Zoology a cold blooded vertebrate animal of a class (Amphibia) that comprises the frogs, toads, newts, salamanders, and caecilians, distinguished by an aquatic gill breathing larval stage followed by a terrestrial lung breathing… …   English new terms dictionary