- a modified arm of the male of certain cephalopods that is used to transfer sperm to the female.
Origin of hectocotylus
1850–55; < New Latin, equivalent to hecto- hecto- + -cotylus < Greek kotýlē cup
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for hectocotylus
Historical Examples of hectocotylus
Arms long and equal, without membrane; hectocotylus not autotomous.
Hectocotylus autotomous; arms unequal in size; aquiferous pores on head and funnel.
- a tentacle in certain male cephalopod molluscs, such as the octopus, that is specialized for transferring spermatozoa to the female
Word Origin for hectocotylus
C19: New Latin, from hecto- + Greek kotulē cup
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