Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

flagella

[fluh-jel-uh]
See more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. a plural of flagellum.
Show More

flagellum

[fluh-jel-uh m]
noun, plural fla·gel·la [fluh-jel-uh] /fləˈdʒɛl ə/, fla·gel·lums.
  1. Biology. a long, lashlike appendage serving as an organ of locomotion in protozoa, sperm cells, etc.
  2. Botany. a runner.
  3. Also called clavola. Entomology. (in an antenna) the whiplike portion above the basal joints.
  4. a whip or lash.
Show More

Origin of flagellum

1800–10; < Latin: whip, lash, diminutive of flagrum a whip, scourge
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for flagella

Historical Examples


British Dictionary definitions for flagella

flagellum

noun plural -la (-lə) or -lums
  1. biology a long whiplike outgrowth from a cell that acts as an organ of locomotion: occurs in some protozoans, gametes, spores, etc
  2. botany a long thin supple shoot or runner
  3. zoology the terminal whiplike part of an arthropod's appendage, esp of the antenna of many insects
Show More
Derived Formsflagellar, adjective

Word Origin

C19: from Latin: a little whip, from flagrum a whip, lash
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

Word Origin and History for flagella

flagellum

n.

1852, in reference to microbes, from Latin flagellum "whip, scourge," diminutive of flagrum "whip," from PIE root *bhlag- "to strike."

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

flagella in Medicine

flagellum

(flə-jĕləm)
n. pl. fla•gel•la (-jĕlə)
  1. A threadlike appendage, especially a whiplike extension of certain cells or organisms that functions as an organ of locomotion.
Show More
Related formsfla•gellar (-jĕlər) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

flagella in Science

flagellum

[flə-jĕləm]
Plural flagella
  1. A slender whiplike part extending from some single-celled organisms, such as the dinoflagellates, that moves rapidly back and forth to impart movement to the organism.
Show More
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.