[ sin-uh-struh l ]
/ ˈsɪn ə strəl /


of, relating to, or on the left side; left (opposed to dextral).
(of certain gastropod shells) coiling counterclockwise, as seen from the apex.

Origin of sinistral

First recorded in 1425–75; late Middle English word from Medieval Latin word sinistrālis. See sinister, -al1

Related forms

sin·is·tral·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sinistral

British Dictionary definitions for sinistral


/ (ˈsɪnɪstrəl) /


of, relating to, or located on the left side, esp the left side of the body
a technical term for left-handed
(of the shells of certain gastropod molluscs) coiling in a clockwise direction from the apex
Compare dextral

Derived Forms

sinistrally, adverb

Word Origin for sinistral

C15 (in the obsolete sense: adverse, evil); C19 (in current senses): from Medieval Latin sinistrālis. See sinister
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

Medicine definitions for sinistral


[ sĭnĭ-strəl, sĭ-nĭstrəl ]


Of, facing, or located on the left side; left.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.