• synonyms


[nuh-frid-ee-uh m]
noun, plural ne·phrid·i·a [nuh-frid-ee-uh] /nəˈfrɪd i ə/. Zoology.
  1. the excretory organ of many invertebrates, consisting of a tubule with one end opening into the body cavity and the other opening into a pore at the body surface.
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Origin of nephridium

From New Latin, dating back to 1875–80; see origin at nephr-, -idium
Related formsne·phrid·i·al, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for nephridia

Historical Examples

  • The nephridia are not easily distinguished, though they are very numerous.

    A Guide for the Study of Animals

    Worrallo Whitney

  • The function of the nephridia is to carry off waste matter from the fluid which fills the body-cavity.

  • Note the delicate membranous dark-colored sac on the floor of the pericardium, the kidneys or nephridia.

  • There are two organs, serving the function of kidneys, placed dorsally one upon each side of the body (nephridia).

    The Sea-beach at Ebb-tide

    Augusta Foote Arnold

  • They consist as a rule of but few segments to most of which a pair of nephridia belong.

British Dictionary definitions for nephridia


noun plural -ia (-ɪə)
  1. a simple excretory organ of many invertebrates, consisting of a tube through which waste products pass to the exterior
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Derived Formsnephridial, adjective

Word Origin

C19: New Latin: little kidney
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 nephridia



(plural nephridia), 1877, Modern Latin, from Greek diminutive of nephros "kidney" (see nephron).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

nephridia in Medicine


n. pl. ne•phrid•i•a (-ē-ə)
  1. The embryonic excretory organ from which the kidney develops.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.