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[kahr-tl-aj-uh-nuh s] /ˌkɑr tlˈædʒ ə nəs/
of or resembling cartilage.
having a skeleton composed either entirely or mainly of cartilage, as vertebrates of the class Chondrichthyes, which includes the sharks, rays, and skates.
Origin of cartilaginous
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English < Latin cartilāginōsus, equivalent to cartilāgin- (stem of cartilāgō) cartilage + -ōsus -ous
Related forms
intercartilaginous, adjective
postcartilaginous, adjective
precartilaginous, adjective
pseudocartilaginous, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for cartilaginous
  • Sharks and rays can be heavier, but they're cartilaginous fish.
  • The cartilaginous fish, so-called because cartilage formed their skeletons, later gave rise to sharks and rays.
  • Sharks are cartilaginous fish, which means that their skeletons are made of cartilage, not bone.
  • One role may stem from the shark's cartilaginous skeleton.
  • When making soups, sturgeon has the same cartilaginous texture that thickens and enriches broths and chowders.
  • People noticed this weird cartilaginous rod, but they forgot that this thing was even there.
  • At birth the humerus is ossified in nearly its whole length, only the extremities remaining cartilaginous.
  • We should remember that the skull at this early age is cartilaginous and flexible, so that it readily yields to muscular action.
Word Origin and History for cartilaginous

1540s, from French cartilagineux and directly from Latin cartilaginosus, from cartilago (genitive cartilaginis) "cartilage, gristle" (see cartilage).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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cartilaginous in Medicine

cartilaginous car·ti·lag·i·nous (kär'tl-āj'ə-nəs)

  1. Chondral.

  2. Having a skeleton consisting primarily of cartilage.

  3. Having the texture of cartilage.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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