Definition of aschelminth in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈaskhelˌminTH/ /ˈaSHhel-/

noun (plural aschelminths or aschelminthes /ˌaskhelˈminTHēz/ /ˌaSHhel-/)

An invertebrate animal belonging to a group of phyla that are distinguished by the lack of a well-developed coelom and blood vessels. Most aschelminths are minute wormlike animals, including the nematode worms, rotifers, and water bears.
  • Phylum Nematoda and about seven minor phyla, formerly placed in a phylum Aschelminthes.
Example sentences
  • Since aschelminths all lack substantial hard parts, their fossil record is extremely spotty.
  • Clearly, the status of several traditional ‘aschelminthes’ groups awaits further confirmation.
  • An alternative explanation is that it was a kind of aschelminth (pseudocoelomate worm), as indicated for example by its asymmetrical mouth.


From modern Latin Aschelminthes (former phylum name), from Greek askos 'sac' + helminth 'worm' (from the former belief that animals of this group had a fluid-filled internal sac).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: asc·hel·minth

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