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Definition of "carnassial" [car•nas•si•al]

  • Adapted for tearing apart flesh: carnassial teeth. (adjective)
  • A tooth adapted for tearing apart flesh, especially one of the last upper premolar or first lower molar teeth in carnivorous mammals. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "carnassial" in a sentence
  • "The incisors are somewhat larger than, but the canines and premolars approximate to, those of the felines; the crown of the incisors is cuspidate, and the premolars increase gradually in size, with the exception of the fourth in the upper jaw, the carnassial, which is treble the size of the one next to it."
  • "Grey wolf bones were found below the 960 BP layer, and a wolf carnassial tooth even lower."
  • "In that case, what price the formidable carnassial teeth, the murderous claws of the lion and the leopard?"
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