Definition of pinnule in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpinˌyo͞ol/


1A secondary division of a pinnate leaf, especially of a fern.
Example sentences
  • The most common elements are parallel-veined leaves that resemble cordaites but that could be isolated pinnules of a pinnate leaf.
  • They are commonly referred to as the Lip Ferns because the sori are borne at the margins of the pinnules and the leaf margins themselves are often reflexed to form false indusia that protect the sori.
  • Lepidopteris is a bipinnate frond whose pinnules resemble some species of Alethopteris.
1.1 Zoology A part or organ like a small wing or fin, especially a side branch on the arm of a crinoid.
Example sentences
  • Fishelson and Nichols observed fish targeting organisms sheltering in the arms and pinnules of living crinoids.
  • Their relative inedibility and dense network of arms and pinnules makes crinoids attractive to commensals - organisms which benefit from close association with a host - and other small animals that wish to hide from predators.
  • The food is transferred down the arms to the mouth by tube feet located on the pinnules and arms.


Late 16th century (denoting one of the sights of an astrolabe): from Latin pinnula 'small wing', diminutive of pinna.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pin·nule

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