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prehensile

[pri-hen-sil, -sahyl]
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adjective
  1. adapted for seizing, grasping, or taking hold of something: a prehensile tail.
  2. able to perceive quickly; having keen mental grasp.
  3. greedy; grasping; avaricious.
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Origin of prehensile

1781–85; < French préhensile (coined by Buffon), equivalent to Latin prehens(us) (see prehension) + French -ile -ile
Related formspre·hen·sil·i·ty [pree-hen-sil-i-tee] /ˌpri hɛnˈsɪl ɪ ti/, nounnon·pre·hen·sile, adjectivesub·pre·hen·sile, adjectivesub·pre·hen·sil·i·ty, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for non-prehensile

Historical Examples

  • The tail is long, round, and covered with short hair; but tufted at the extremity and non-prehensile.

    A Hand-book to the Primates, Volume 1 (of 2)

    Henry O. Forbes

  • The molar teeth are small; the tail, which in some is long, in others short, is non-prehensile.

  • Wallace, in a residence of four years, saw twenty-one species—seven with prehensile and fourteen with non-prehensile tails.

  • Their tail, though long, has no naked area at the extremity and is non-prehensile.

  • The genus Pithecia, the Sakis, consists of five species with long bushy tails, which are non-prehensile.


British Dictionary definitions for non-prehensile

prehensile

adjective
  1. adapted for grasping, esp by wrapping around a supporta prehensile tail
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Derived Formsprehensility (ˌpriːhɛnˈsɪlɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin

C18: from French préhensile, from Latin prehendere to grasp
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 non-prehensile

prehensile

adj.

1771, from French préhensile "adapted for grasping" (Buffon), from Latin prehensus, past participle of prehendere "to grasp, to seize," from prae- "before" (see pre-) + -hendere, related to hedera "ivy," via notion of "clinging," and cognate with Greek khandanein "to take in, hold" (see get (v.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

non-prehensile in Medicine

prehensile

(prē-hĕnsəl, -sīl′)
adj.
  1. Adapted for seizing, grasping, or holding, especially by wrapping around an object.
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Related formspre′hen•sili•ty (-sĭlĭ-tē) n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

non-prehensile in Science

prehensile

[prē-hĕnsəl]
  1. Adapted for seizing, grasping, or holding, especially by wrapping around an object. The feet of many birds, the tails of monkeys, and the trunks of elephants are prehensile.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.