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[v. flaj-uh-leyt; adj., n. flaj-uh-lit, -leyt] /v. ˈflædʒ əˌleɪt; adj., n. ˈflædʒ ə lɪt, -ˌleɪt/
verb (used with object), flagellated, flagellating.
to whip; scourge; flog; lash.
Also, flagellated. Biology. having flagella.
Botany. producing filiform runners or runnerlike branches, as the strawberry.
pertaining to or caused by flagellates.
any protozoan of the phylum (or class) Mastigophora, having one or more flagella.
1615-25; < Latin flagellātus, past participle of flagellāre to whip. See flagellum, -ate1
Related forms
flagellator, noun
[flaj-uh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ˈflædʒ ə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/ (Show IPA),
multiflagellate, adjective
multiflagellated, adjective
nonflagellate, adjective
nonflagellated, adjective
preflagellate, adjective
preflagellated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for flagellate
  • To conclude, my aim in this is not to flagellate myself in a dervish of self-indulgence.
British Dictionary definitions for flagellate


verb (ˈflædʒɪˌleɪt)
(transitive) to whip; scourge; flog
adjective (ˈflædʒɪlɪt; -ˌleɪt)
possessing one or more flagella
resembling a flagellum; whiplike
noun (ˈflædʒɪlɪt; -ˌleɪt)
a flagellate organism, esp any protozoan of the phylum Zoomastigina
Derived Forms
flagellation, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for flagellate

1620s, from Latin flagellatus, past participle of flagellare "to scourge, lash" (see flagellum). Related: Flagellated; flagellating. An earlier verb for this was flagellen (mid-15c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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flagellate in Medicine

flagellate flag·el·late (flāj'ə-lĭt, -lāt', flə-jěl'ĭt)

  1. Flagellated.

  2. Relating to or caused by a flagellate organism.

A member of the class Mastigophora, comprising organisms having a flagellum.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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flagellate in Science
Any of various protozoans of the subphylum Mastigophora that move by means of one or more flagella. Some flagellates can make food by photosynthesis (such as euglenas and volvox), and are often classified as green algae by botanists. Others are symbiotic or parasitic (such as trypanosomes). Flagellates are related to amoebas. Also called mastigophoran.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for flagellate


(subphylum Mastigophora), any of a group of protozoans, mostly uninucleate organisms, that possess, at some time in the life cycle, one to many flagella for locomotion and sensation. (A flagellum is a hairlike structure capable of whiplike lashing movements that furnish locomotion.) Many flagellates have a thin, firm pellicle (outer covering) or a coating of a jellylike substance. Reproduction is either asexual (usually by longitudinal splitting) or sexual. The flagellates are divided taxonomically into two classes, those resembling plants, Phytomastigophorea (see phytoflagellate), and those resembling animals, Zoomastigophorea (see zooflagellate).

Learn more about Mastigophora with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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