vestigial

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj vestigial not fully developed in mature animals "rudimentary wings"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Vestigial Of or pertaining to a vestige or remnant; like a vestige.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • vestigial Of, pertaining to, or of the nature of a vestige; like a mere trace of what has been; also, rudimentary. In biology vestigial has a specific application to those organs or structures which are commonly called rudimentary, and are rudimentary in fact, but which are properly regarded, not as beginnings or incipient states, but as remains of parts or structures which have been better developed in an earlier stage of existence of the same organism, or in lower preceding organisms, and have aborted or atrophied, or become otherwise reduced or rudimental in the evolution of the individual or of the species. Thus, the parovaria, the canals of Gartner, the male womb, the urachus, and the round ligament of the liver are vestigial structures with reference to the Wolffian bodies and allantois of the fetus: the thymus of the adult is vestigial with reference to that structure in the infant; the vermiform appendix of the colon is vestigial with reference to the very large cæcum of a ruminant; the stunted coracoid process of the scapula of a mammal is a vestigial structure with reference to the large articulated coracoid bone of a bird. Vestigial structures of any kind, or the remains of what has been, are to be carefully distinguished from rudimentary structures, or the beginning of what is to be (as fully explained under rudimentary). They are very significant biological facts, of which much use has been made by Darwin and other modern evolution ists in tracing lines of descent with modification and determining probable ancestry.
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Usage

In literature:

The hair on the body is a vestigial organ, of actual use to no race of men, an evident relic of the thick warm coat of an earlier ancestor.
"The Story of Evolution" by Joseph McCabe
The vestigial legs remain inert and absolutely useless.
"The Wonders of Instinct" by J. H. Fabre
Mr. Smith,' remarks our author, 'we have a striking vestigial specimen of an almost extinct type.
"The Patient Observer" by Simeon Strunsky
The usual process is a gradual recession to a merely vestigial state.
"The Task of Social Hygiene" by Havelock Ellis
Like vestigial structures in general, however, this one is highly variable.
"Darwin, and After Darwin (Vol. 1 and 3, of 3)" by George John Romanes
These are as yet but vestigial stigmata.
"The Glow-Worm and Other Beetles" by Jean Henri Fabre
There were vestigial signs of arms, legs, but tiny and useless, grown fast to the body.
"Collectivum" by Mike Lewis
It is safe to suppose that our needs are like those of the race and that in us nothing is vestigial that is active in others.
"The Kempton-Wace Letters" by Jack London
After all, you are only a vestigial.
"The Six Fingers of Time" by Raphael Aloysius Lafferty
The feelers are branched and the jaws vestigial.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 6" by Various
Thus the view that the behaviour is vestigial is not perhaps unreasonable.
"Territory in Bird Life" by H. Eliot Howard
Similar vestigial teeth, 5-40 in number, sometimes occur in goosebeaked whales (p. 70).
"Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises of the Western North Atlantic" by Stephen Leatherwood
First as to the rudimentary, fragmentary, or vestigial organs so common in Nature.
"The Old Riddle and the Newest Answer" by John Gerard
Tail vestigial or absent.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 3, Slice 4" by Various
Prominent among these vestigial structures, as they are called, are those which smack of the sea.
"McClure's Magazine, Vol. 1, No. 1, June 1893" by Various
Vestigial characters, 171, 184, 261, 294.
"Darwin, and After Darwin, Volume II (of 3)" by George John Romanes
In the Myxinoids the branchial basket is reduced to a few vestigial masses of cartilage.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 7, Slice 8" by Various
Biting mandibles; vestigial maxillulae; second maxillae incompletely fused.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 4" by Various
The shoulder girdle has lost the large coracoid of Monotremes; this bone has the vestigial character that it possesses in other Eutheria.
"The Cambridge Natural History, Vol X., Mammalia" by Frank Evers Beddard
In some burrowing rodents and others the eye is quite vestigial and even concealed beneath the skin.
"Elementary Zoology, Second Edition" by Vernon L. Kellogg
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In news:

Researchers have previously speculated it may trigger some reaction in the recesses of our bodies — a vestigial reflex — because the sound resembles that of a primate's warning call.
(MoneyWatch) In school we learned about vestigial human organs or structures that once served a purpose but no longer do.
Pica , Vestigial Tails: Fave Icky Obsessions Bad for Finding Love.
It is like the human appendix, a vestigial organ on the body politic.
Pica, Vestigial Tails: Fave Icky Obsessions Bad for Finding Love.
Creation Stories & Vestigial Organs .
Creation Stories and Vestigial Organs .
Creation Stories and Vestigial Organs E-mail this product to a friend.
Now that we have a national primary process to select our presidential candidates, the conventions have become vestigial remains of a prior time when candidates were actually selected at them.
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In science:

After their annihilation at t ≃ 0.2, the vestigial of two vortex cores becomes flattened gradually((c)-(f )).
Reconnection and acoustic emission of quantized vortices in superfluid by the numerical analysis of the Gross-Pitaevskii equation
The motion of the vestigial of two vortex cores is related with the stationary solitary wave studied by Jones et al9 .
Reconnection and acoustic emission of quantized vortices in superfluid by the numerical analysis of the Gross-Pitaevskii equation
The vestigial of the vortices correspond to the rarefaction pulse.
Reconnection and acoustic emission of quantized vortices in superfluid by the numerical analysis of the Gross-Pitaevskii equation
As described before, the quantum energy of the vestigial of the singular cores are reduced and transferred into the kinetic energy.
Reconnection and acoustic emission of quantized vortices in superfluid by the numerical analysis of the Gross-Pitaevskii equation
On the other hand, that of ec kin (x) has a very large peak near the vestigial of the singular cores, which contributes to the increasing in the incompressible energy in Fig. 5.
Reconnection and acoustic emission of quantized vortices in superfluid by the numerical analysis of the Gross-Pitaevskii equation
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