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[hur-pi-tol-uh-jee] /ˌhɜr pɪˈtɒl ə dʒi/
the branch of zoology dealing with reptiles and amphibians.
1815-25; < Greek herpetó(n) a creeping thing (Compare hérpein to creep) + -logy; cf. serpent
Related forms
[hur-pi-tl-oj-ik] /ˌhɜr pɪ tlˈɒdʒ ɪk/ (Show IPA),
herpetological, adjective
herpetologically, adverb
herpetologist, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for herpetological


the study of reptiles and amphibians
Derived Forms
herpetologic (ˌhɜːpɪtəˈlɒdʒɪk), herpetological, adjective
herpetologically, adverb
herpetologist, noun
Word Origin
C19: from Greek herpeton creeping animal, from herpein to creep
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 herpetological
"study of reptiles," 1824, from Fr. herpétologie, coined from Gk. herpeton "reptile," lit. "creeping thing," from herpein "to creep" (see serpent) + logia "a speaking in a certain manner, study of."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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herpetological in Science
The scientific study of reptiles and amphibians.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for herpetological


scientific study of amphibians and reptiles. Like most other fields of vertebrate biology (e.g., ichthyology, mammalogy), herpetology is composed of a number of cross-disciplines: behaviour, ecology, physiology, anatomy, paleontology, taxonomy, and others. Most students of recent forms are narrow in their interests, working on only one order or suborder (e.g., frogs, salamanders, snakes, lizards). A paleontologist is more likely to work with both amphibians and reptiles or with intermediate forms

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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