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polydactyly Line breaks: poly|dac¦tyly
Pronunciation: /ˌpɒlɪˈdaktɪli/

Definition of polydactyly in English:


[mass noun]
A condition in which a person or animal has more than five fingers or toes on one, or on each, hand or foot: polydactyly of both hands was noted at birth
More example sentences
  • The incidence of polydactyly (supernumerary digits of hands or feet) is the same in both sexes, with simultaneous polydactyly of the hands and feet present in about one third of cases.
  • True polydactyly more commonly occurs on the feet and may be present with malformation syndromes.
  • Since postaxial polydactyly is an autosomal dominant trait, we may hypothesize that the two people who had served as models for Raphael were relatives, probably father and son.


Late 19th century: from Greek poludaktulos (from polu- 'many' + daktulos 'finger') + -y3.



Pronunciation: /pɒlɪˈdaktɪl/
adjective& noun
Example sentences
  • Cats with this mutation are known as polydactyls (from the Latin for ‘many digits’), or as Hemingway cats.
  • For instance the limitation of digit number to a maximum of five among recent amniotes cannot be explained by a developmental constraint per se since polydactyl limbs appear quite frequently.
  • About half the cats are polydactyl, they and others are descendants of a six-toed cat given to Hemingway by a ship's captain.

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