[mad-ruh-pawr, -pohr]


any true or stony coral of the order Madreporaria, forming reefs or islands in tropical seas.

Origin of madrepore

1745–55; < French madrépore reef-building coral < Italian madrepora, equivalent to madre mother (< Latin māter) + -pora, for poro < Greek pôros kind of stone
Related formsmad·re·por·ic [mad-ruh-pawr-ik, -por-] /ˌmæd rəˈpɔr ɪk, -ˈpɒr-/, mad·re·po·ri·an [mad-ruh-pawr-ee-uh n, -pohr-] /ˌmæd rəˈpɔr i ən, -ˈpoʊr-/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for madrepore

Historical Examples of madrepore

  • It occurs in the Dublin limestone, and resembles a coral or madrepore.

    A Conchological Manual

    George Brettingham Sowerby

  • All around is a sea of mounds covered with sand, where the houses stood, mostly built of madrepore, and laid out in streets.

    Southern Arabia

    Theodore Bent

  • The madrepore pier had been nearly swept away, and the houses near the water were flooded.

    Southern Arabia

    Theodore Bent

  • The madrepore corals are called reef-builders, but not in the sense of constructors of reefs.

    The Sea-beach at Ebb-tide

    Augusta Foote Arnold

  • Finally, as a last despairing effort, I took a pencil and began to make a sketch of a madrepore.

British Dictionary definitions for madrepore



any coral of the genus Madrepora, many of which occur in tropical seas and form large coral reefs: order Zoantharia
Derived Formsmadreporal, madreporic (ˌmædrɪˈpɒrɪk), madreporitic (ˌmædrɪpəˈrɪtɪk) or madreporian, adjective

Word Origin for madrepore

C18: via French from Italian madrepora mother-stone, from madre mother + -pora, from Latin porus or Greek poros calcareous stone, stalactite
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