• synonyms


[puhl-vil-uh s]
noun, plural pul·vil·li [puhl-vil-ahy] /pʌlˈvɪl aɪ/. Entomology.
  1. a soft, padlike structure located at the base of each claw on the feet of certain insects.
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Origin of pulvillus

1685–95; < Latin, diminutive of pulvīnus cushion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for pulvillus

Historical Examples

  • Pulvilliform: having the appearance or structure of a pulvillus.

    Explanation of Terms Used in Entomology

    John. B. Smith

  • Some people think that is the way the pulvillus on the fly's foot acts.

    The Insect Folk

    Margaret Warner Morley

  • The little tarsus is like the tarsus of the hind leg with its claws and its pulvillus, only, of course, it is smaller.

    The Insect Folk

    Margaret Warner Morley

  • Extension plate: a structure at the base of the pulvillus whose function it is to extend it.

  • Pad: the pulvillus, or that part of it which is capable of extension and retraction in some Coleoptera.

British Dictionary definitions for pulvillus


noun plural -li (-laɪ)
  1. a small pad between the claws at the end of an insect's leg
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Word Origin

C18: from Latin, from pulvīnulus, diminutive of pulvīnus cushion
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