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or natatory

[ney-tuh-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-, nat-uh- or ney-tuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-, nat-uh-] /ˌneɪ təˈtɔr i əl, -ˈtoʊr-, ˌnæt ə- or ˈneɪ təˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr-, ˈnæt ə-/
pertaining to, adapted for, or characterized by swimming:
natatorial birds.
Origin of natatorial
First recorded in 1810-20; natat(ion) + -orial Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for natatory
Historical Examples
  • And yet 'this natatory art' is but little cultivated amongst us.

    The Hero of the Humber Henry Woodcock
  • I had confidence enough in my natatory powers to make me easy on that score.

    The Boy Tar Mayne Reid
  • About the degree of your natatory powers we needn't dispute.

    Gwen Wynn Mayne Reid
  • The eyes were probably stalked, the antennae and mandibles biramous and natatory, and both armed with masticatory processes.

  • They are free and natatory when young, but in the adult state attached to rocks or some floating substance.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • In this family a great number of natatory vesicles are connected with the terminal arial vesicle, as in Fig. 101, Praya diphys.

    The Ocean World: Louis Figuier
  • They have four short legs, of which the hinder have toes, united by a natatory membrane, and only three claws to each foot.

    Reptiles and Birds Louis Figuier
  • Confident in his natatory powers, he had at first believed this feat to be not only possible, but probable and easy.

    The Ocean Waifs Mayne Reid
  • Its exact position likewise varies, for it arises either between the first or second pairs of natatory legs.

  • In this fig. 3, it may be observed that the natatory legs and caudal appendages of the pupa have not as yet been moulted.

British Dictionary definitions for natatory


of or relating to swimming
Word Origin
C18: from Late Latin natātōrius, from natāre to swim
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 natatory



1816, from natatory (adj.), from Latin natatorius, from natator "swimmer" (see natatorium) + -al.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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