- one member of the first pair of usually pincerlike appendages of spiders and other arachnids.
Origin of chelicera
1825–35; < New Latin, equivalent to cheli- cheli- + Greek kér(as) horn + Latin -a feminine noun ending
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- of, relating to, or belonging to the Chelicerata, a subphylum of arthropods, including arachnids and the horseshoe crab, in which the first pair of limbs are modified as chelicerae
- any arthropod belonging to the Chelicerata
- one of a pair of appendages on the head of spiders and other arachnids: often modified as food-catching claws
C19: from New Latin, from French chélicère, from chél- see chela 1 + -cère from Greek keras horn
- Any of various, mostly terrestrial arthropods of the subphylum Chelicerata, having a body divided into two main parts: a cephalothorax and an abdomen. Chelicerates have specialized feeding appendages (chelicerae) and lack antennae. Chelicerates include the arachnids and merostomes (horseshoe crabs) and are closely related to the extinct trilobites.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.