Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

Word of the Day
Sunday, June 24, 2018

Definitions for edentate

  1. toothless.
  2. belonging or pertaining to the Edentata, an order of New World mammals characterized by the absence of incisors and canines in the arrangement of teeth and comprising the armadillos, the sloths, and the South American anteaters.
  3. an edentate mammal.

Learn something
new every day


GET OUR


Thank youfor signing up
Get the Word of the Day Email
Citations for edentate
As would have been the case a million years ago, a typical colonist can expect to be edentate by the time he or she is thirty years old, having suffered many skull-cracking toothaches on the way. Kurt Vonnegut, Galápagos, 1985
Anyway, an edentate man led a bloated, mouth-foaming goat down a road webbed with knee-deep gullies. Aleksandar Hemon, The Lazarus Project, 2008
Origin of edentate
1820-1830
Edentate means “lacking teeth, toothless,” a neutral term; it is also used in taxonomic names for an order of mammals lacking front teeth, e.g. sloths, armadillos, another neutral sense. The origin of edentate is the Latin adjective ēdentātus, the past participle of the verb ēdentāre “to knock (someone’s) teeth out,” definitely not a neutral sense. Edentate entered English in the 19th century.