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[duhk-bil] /ˈdʌkˌbɪl/
Also called duckbill platypus, duck-billed platypus.
Origin of duckbill
1550-60; duck1 + bill2


[plat-i-puh s, -poo s] /ˈplæt ɪ pəs, -ˌpʊs/
noun, plural platypuses, platypi
[plat-i-pahy] /ˈplæt ɪˌpaɪ/ (Show IPA)
a small, aquatic, egg-laying monotreme, Ornithorhynchus anatinus, of Australia and Tasmania, having webbed feet, a tail like that of a beaver, a sensitive bill resembling that of a duck, and, in adult males, venom-injecting spurs on the ankles of the hind limbs, used primarily for fighting with other males during the breeding season.
Also called duckbill, duckbilled platypus.
1790-1800; < New Latin < Greek platýpous flat-footed, equivalent to platy- platy- + -pous, adj. derivative of poús foot Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for duckbilled platypus
Historical Examples
  • Instead of these, it has Marsupials only: kangaroos and opossums; wombats and the duckbilled platypus.

    The Malay Archipelago Alfred Russell Wallace
British Dictionary definitions for duckbilled platypus


noun (pl) -puses
Word Origin
C18: New Latin, from platy- + -pus, from Greek pous foot
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for duckbilled platypus



Australian duck-mole, 1799, from Modern Latin, from Greek platypous, literally "flat-footed," from platys "broad, flat" (see plaice (n.)) + pous "foot" (see foot).

Orig. the generic name, but, having already been given to a genus of beetles, it was in 1800 changed for Ornithorhyncus. [OED]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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