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Do not confuse mussel with muscle. See muscle.
- any of a number of bivalve mollusks with a brown or purplish-black shell.
- a marine bivalve that uses byssus threads to anchor to a firm surface (family Mytilidae, order Mytiloidea), including the edible mussel (Mytilus edulis). a freshwater bivalve that typically lies on the bed of a river, some species forming small pearls (family Unionidae, order Unionoida).
Old English mus(c)le, superseded by forms from Middle Low German mussel, Middle Dutch mosscele; ultimately from late Latin muscula, from Latin musculus (see muscle)