hopeful monster

noun Biology.

a hypothetical individual organism that, by means of a fortuitous macromutation permitting an adaptive shift to a new mode of life, becomes the founder of a new type of organism and a vehicle of macroevolution.

Nearby words

  1. hope diamond,
  2. hope springs eternal,
  3. hope, anthony,
  4. hope, bob,
  5. hopeful,
  6. hopefully,
  7. hopeh,
  8. hopei,
  9. hopeless,
  10. hopelessly

Origin of hopeful monster

First recorded in 1933; phrase introduced by German geneticist Richard B. Goldschmidt (1879–1958)

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019