• synonyms


  1. any freshwater, marine, or terrestrial crustacean of the order or suborder Isopoda, having seven pairs of legs typically adapted for crawling, and a dorsoventrally flattened body, and including wood lice, several aquatic parasites of crabs and shrimps, and numerous swimming or bottom-dwelling species.
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  1. of, relating to, or characteristic of the Isopoda.
  2. having the feet all alike, or similar in character.
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Origin of isopod

From the New Latin word Isopoda, dating back to 1825–35. See iso-, -pod
Related formsi·sop·o·dan [ahy-sop-uh-dn] /aɪˈsɒp ə dn/, adjective, nouni·sop·o·dous, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for isopod

Historical Examples of isopod

  • This parasite is an Isopod (Bopyrus), the appendages of which are imperfectly developed.

    The Sea Shore

    William S. Furneaux

  • The male of this isopod, which inhabits the bay of Christiansand, is not yet known.

  • This little crustacean is associated in its work on submerged timber with the isopod Limnoria lignorum.

    The Sea-beach at Ebb-tide

    Augusta Foote Arnold

  • He concludes that they were more like what one would expect in an isopod.

  • In his first article he mistakes a species of the myriapod genus Glomeris for the isopod genus Armadillo.

    Lamarck, the Founder of Evolution

    Alpheus Spring Packard

British Dictionary definitions for isopod


  1. any crustacean of the order Isopoda, including woodlice and pill bugs, in which the body is flattened dorsoventrally
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  1. of, relating to, or belonging to the Isopoda
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Derived Formsisopodan (aɪˈsɒpədən) or isopodous, adjective
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 isopod


1835, from French isopode, from Latin isopoda (neuter plural), from Greek iso- (see iso-) + pod-, stem of pous "foot" (see foot (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

isopod in Science


  1. Any of numerous mostly small crustaceans of the order Isopoda, characterized by a flattened body usually bearing seven pairs of legs. Isopods include the sow bugs, pill bugs, and gribbles.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.