- belonging to the Cetacea, an order of aquatic, chiefly marine mammals, including the whales and dolphins.
- a cetacean mammal.
Origin of cetacean
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for cetacean
Dissection of a small Cetacean sent to me from Orkney in the month of May 1835.
There is one passage which seems to imply that the word tannin may signify a cetacean.Bible Animals;
J. G. Wood
By nature, this cetacean prefers a cold climate to a warm one.Seven Legs Across the Seas
This cetacean was obtained on the coast of the island of Rugen, in the Baltic.Parasites
T. Spencer Cobbold
The tail was of the Cetacean pattern, and thus like that of Halicore.The Cambridge Natural History, Vol X., Mammalia
Frank Evers Beddard
- of, relating to, or belonging to the Cetacea, an order of aquatic placental mammals having no hind limbs and a blowhole for breathing: includes toothed whales (dolphins, porpoises, etc) and whalebone whales (rorquals, right whales, etc)
- a whale
C19: from New Latin Cētācea, ultimately from Latin cētus whale, from Greek kētos
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 cetacean
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- Any of various, often very large aquatic mammals of the order Cetacea, having a hairless body that resembles that of a fish. Cetaceans have an elongated skull, a flat, horizontal tail, forelimbs modified into broad flippers, and no hind limbs. They breathe through blowholes located usually at the top of the skull. Whales, dolphins, and porpoises are cetaceans. See more at baleen whale toothed whale.
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