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[dak-tuh-luh s] /ˈdæk tə ləs/
noun, plural dactyli
[dak-tuh-lahy, -lee] /ˈdæk təˌlaɪ, -ˌli/ (Show IPA)
an enlarged portion of the leg after the first joint in some insects, as the pollen-carrying segment in the hind leg of certain bees.
Origin of dactylus
New Latin < Greek; see dactyl


or Daktyl

[dak-til] /ˈdæk tɪl/
noun, plural Dactyls, Dactyli
[dak-ti-lahy] /ˈdæk tɪˌlaɪ/ (Show IPA).
Classical Mythology.
any of a number of beings dwelling on Mount Ida and working as metalworkers and magicians.
< Greek Dáktyloi (Idaîoi) (Idaean) craftsmen or wizards (plural of dáktylos; see dactyl) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dactyli
Historical Examples
  • This was into right and left, and the general name of dactyli, Fingers, was given them.

    The Religious Sentiment Daniel G. Brinton
British Dictionary definitions for dactyli


(prosody) Also called dactylic. a metrical foot of three syllables, one long followed by two short (– ◡ ◡) Compare bacchius
(zoology) any digit of a vertebrate
Word Origin
C14: via Latin from Greek daktulos finger, dactyl, comparing the finger's three joints to the three syllables
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for dactyli



metrical foot, late 14c., from Greek dactylos, literally "finger" (also "toe"), of unknown origin; the metrical use (a long syllable followed by two short ones) is by analogy with the three joints of a finger.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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dactyli in Medicine

dactyl dac·tyl (dāk'təl)
A finger or toe; digit.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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