• Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Dysteleology (Biol) The doctrine of purposelessness; a term applied by Haeckel to that branch of physiology which treats of rudimentary organs, in view of their being useless to the life of the organism. "To the doctrine of dysteleology , or the denial of final causes, a proof of the real existence of such a thing as instinct must necessarily be fatal."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n dysteleology The science of rudimentary or vestigial organs, apparently functionless or of no use or purpose in the economy of the organism, with reference to the doctrine of purposelessness. The idea is that many useless or even hurtful parts may be present in an organism in obedience to the law of heredity simply, and that such are evidences of the lack of design or purpose or “final cause” which the doctrines of teleology presume.
    • n dysteleology Any evasion of the functional aim or end, as where an insect punctures a nectary from below without coming into contact with the anthers, thus frustrating the end of cross-fertilization.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Dysteleology dis-tel-ē-ol′o-ji the doctrine of purposelessness, or denial of 'final causes:' the study of apparently functionless rudimentary organs in animals and plants
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Pref. dys-, + teleology,


In literature:

In spite of the eight Bridgewater Treatises, and the "Ninth" beside, dysteleology still holds full half the field as against teleology.
"The Unseen World and Other Essays" by John Fiske