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teleonomy

[tel-ee-on-uh-mee, tee-lee‐]
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noun
  1. Biology. the principle that the body's structures and functions serve an overall purpose, as in assuring the survival of the organism.
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Origin of teleonomy

1955–60; teleo- + -nomy
Related formstel·e·o·nom·ic [tel-ee-uh-nom-ik, tee-lee‐] /tɛl i əˈnɒm ɪk, ˌti li‐/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018