Definition of gorgonian in English:

gorgonian

Line breaks: gor¦gon|ian
Pronunciation: /ɡɔːˈɡəʊnɪən
 
/
Zoology

noun

A colonial coral of an order distinguished by having a horny tree-like skeleton, including the sea fans and precious red coral.
  • Order Gorgonacea, class Anthozoa
More example sentences
  • So I used the last dive of the day to shoot several reef scenes of crinoids sitting among soft corals and gorgonians, and a pair of yellow ghost pipefish.
  • There are many small creatures to photograph among the soft corals, gorgonians, hard corals and sponges.
  • Soft corals and gorgonians reach out from the overhanging sides, while shoals of fish swirl in the shade.

adjective

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Relating to gorgons or gorgonians.
More example sentences
  • Several ‘fingers' of rock, each densely covered in gorgonian fans, projected out into the blue.
  • The coral and sponge growth was again lush, but with far healthier gorgonian colonies away from the sometimes violent swells of Diamond Rock.
  • This dive is better in the deeper section, where large gorgonian seafans stretch out into the current, surrounded by large numbers of fish, corals, invertebrates, and some huge barrel sponges.

Origin

mid 19th century: from modern Latin Gorgonia, from Latin Gorgo (see gorgon), with reference to its petrifaction, + -an.

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