• synonyms


noun (used with a plural verb) Biology.
  1. a taxonomic kingdom comprising the protists.
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Origin of Protista

From New Latin, dating back to 1875–80; see origin at protist
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for protista

Historical Examples

  • But this definition could not be made so as to apply to many of the Protista.

    The History of Creation, Vol. II (of 2)

    Ernst Haeckel

  • In this respect some Protista are more like plants, others more like animals.

  • It is of little moment, practically, where these protista forms are placed.


    T. Spencer Cobbold

  • Among certain infusoria and other protista, they do, in fact, remain together and build up branching colonies.

  • Symbiosis is found among the protista, being very wide-spread among the radiolaria.

    The Wonders of Life

    Ernst Haeckel

protista in Medicine


  1. A former taxonomic kingdom made up of eukaryotic, unicellular organisms. Members of Protista now belong to the kingdom Protoctista, a new classification in most modern taxonomic systems.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.