[dih-plod-uh-kuh s]

noun, plural di·plod·o·cus·es.

a huge herbivorous dinosaur of the genus Diplodocus, from the Late Jurassic Epoch of western North America, growing to a length of about 87 feet (26.5 meters).

Origin of diplodocus

< New Latin (1878), equivalent to diplo- diplo- + Greek dokós beam, bar, shaft
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for diplodocus

Historical Examples of diplodocus

  • The Diplodocus nearly equalled the Brontosaurus in bulk and exceeded it in length.


    William Diller Matthew

  • "Dip," he called the enormous skeleton, though its full name was Diplodocus.

    Jerry's Charge Account

    Hazel Hutchins Wilson

  • Towering thrice as high as the largest African elephant, the diplodocus was now but seventy-five yards away.

  • We could just detect a Zeppelin or a Diplodocus as a moving speck against the surface.

  • The diplodocus, meanwhile, had been looking down upon the scene with half-bewildered apprehension.

    In the Morning of Time

    Charles G. D. Roberts

British Dictionary definitions for diplodocus


noun plural -cuses

any herbivorous quadrupedal late Jurassic dinosaur of the genus Diplodocus, characterized by a very long neck and tail and a total body length of 27 metres: suborder Sauropoda (sauropods)

Word Origin for diplodocus

C19: from New Latin, from diplo- + Greek dokos beam
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 diplodocus

1884, coined in Modern Latin in 1878 by U.S. paleontologist Othniel Charles Marsh (1831-1899) from Greek diploos "double" (see diploid) + dokos "a beam." So called for the peculiar structure of the tail bones.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for diplodocus



A very large herbivorous dinosaur of the genus Diplodocus of the late Jurassic Period. Diplodocus had a long, slender neck and tail and a small head with peglike teeth, and could grow to nearly 27 m (90 ft) in length. Fossilized skin impressions show that it probably had dermal spines along its back. Diplodocus is one of the longest known sauropod dinosaurs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.