Definition of tunicate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈt(y)o͞onəˌkāt/


A marine invertebrate of a group that includes the sea squirts and salps. They have a rubbery or hard outer coat and two siphons to draw water into and out of the body.
Example sentences
  • The hull here is rich in marine life - hydroids, tunicates, anemones and sponges.
  • Sea squirts are tunicates, a type of sea life with a primitive spinal cord and a firm, flexible outer covering called a ‘tunic,’ from which the name derives.
  • Many tunicates have a larva that is free-swimming and exhibits all chordate characteristics: it has a notochord, a dorsal nerve cord, pharyngeal slits, and a post-anal tail.


(usually tunicated) Botany
(Of a plant bulb, e.g., an onion) having concentric layers.


Mid 18th century: from Latin tunicatus, past participle of tunicare 'clothe with a tunic', from tunica (see tunica).

Words that rhyme with tunicate

communicate, excommunicate, intercommunicate

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: tu·ni·cate

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