[brey-kee-uh-pod, brak-ee-]
any mollusklike, marine animal of the phylum Brachiopoda, having a dorsal and ventral shell; a lamp shell.
Also, brachiopodous [brey-kee-op-uh-duhs, brak-ee] . belonging or pertaining to the Brachiopoda.

1830–40; < Neo-Latin Brachiopoda. See brachio-, -pod Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To brachiopod
World English Dictionary
brachiopod (ˈbreɪkɪəˌpɒd, ˈbræk-)
See also bryozoan Also called: lamp shell any marine invertebrate animal of the phylum Brachiopoda, having a ciliated feeding organ (lophophore) and a shell consisting of dorsal and ventral valves
[C19: from New Latin Brachiopoda; see brachium, -pod]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

"bivalve mollusk," 1836, Mod.L., from Gk. brakhion "arm" (see brachio-) + pous "foot" (see foot). They have long spiral "arms" on either side of their mouths.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Science Dictionary
brachiopod   (brā'kē-ə-pŏd')  Pronunciation Key 
Any of various marine invertebrate animals of the phylum Brachiopoda that resemble clams. Brachiopods have paired upper and lower shells attached to a usually stationary stalk and hollow tentacles covered with cilia that sweep food particles into the mouth. Brachiopods are probably related to the phoronids and bryozoans, and were extremely abundant throughout the Paleozoic Era.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica


any member of the phylum Brachiopoda, a group of bottom-dwelling marine invertebrates. They are covered by two valves, or shells; one valve covers the dorsal, or top, side; the other covers the ventral, or bottom, side. The valves, of unequal size, are bilaterally symmetrical; i.e., the right and left sides are mirror images of one another. Brachiopods (from the Greek words meaning "arm" and "foot") are commonly known as lamp shells because they resemble early Roman oil lamps.

Learn more about brachiopod with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Brachiopod valves differ in size and shape, and are not mirror images.
The two brachiopod valves differ in shape and size from one another.
Brachiopod diversity declined significantly at the end of the paleozoic.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature