(Chiefly of an animal’s limb or tail) capable of grasping: many monkeys have long, prehensile tails which they use in swinging through the trees
More example sentences
- The plate in the field guide shows a strange, golden-brown animal with a prehensile tail, hook-like claws and a funny snub nose.
- Nocturnal and arboreal, they clamber up trees and hang from limbs thanks to long prehensile tails and opposable inside toes (like thumbs) on their hind feet.
- Coendou and Sphiggurus are arboreal animals, with long, spineless, prehensile tails and wide foot pads.
late 18th century: from French préhensile, from Latin prehens- 'grasped', from the verb prehendere, from prae 'before' + hendere 'to grasp'.
Definition of prehensile in:
- The US English dictionary