Definition of sinistral in English:


Line breaks: sin¦is|tral
Pronunciation: /ˈsɪnɪstr(ə)l


  • 1Of or on the left side or the left hand (the opposite of dextral).
    More example sentences
    • Nevertheless, sinistral and dextral Pb elements are virtually mirror images, that is, they are more alike than the corresponding elements in L. variabilis.
  • 1.1Left-handed.
    More example sentences
    • Although sinistral individuals are known in many normally dextral species, left-handedness as a characteristic of species is rare in most gastropod clades.
  • 1.2 Geology Relating to or denoting a strike-slip fault in which the motion of the block on the further side of the fault from an observer is towards the left.
    More example sentences
    • This paper tentatively identifies two lineaments and a fault that may relate to sinistral strike-slip faulting in the pre-Paradox Formation basement beneath Upheaval Dome.
    • Although data on vertical displacement on the Klima fault zone are limited, the horizontal component is clearly much larger, and the Klima fault zone represents a sinistral strike-slip fault.
    • In conclusion, the geological characteristics of the South China Sea cannot be explained by a pull-apart model involving a releasing bend of a sinistral strike-slip fault.
  • 1.3 Zoology (Of a spiral mollusc shell) with whorls rising to the left and coiling in a clockwise direction.
    More example sentences
    • If the umbilicate side is directed downward and the flat side upward, this gives the impression the shell is sinistral or a left-handed spiral, because the aperture when held toward the observer is on the left.
    • These gastropods have slender, high-spired, multiwhorled shells bearing a sinistral protoconch and were united by Knight in the family Streptacididae.
    • The latter species has a smooth, valvatiform, dextrally coiled teleoconch and a sinistral, anastrophic (coaxial heterostrophic) protoconch.


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  • A left-handed person.
    More example sentences
    • Left-handed children, or sinistrals, often have a difficult time in a world geared overwhelmingly to the right-handed.



Pronunciation: /-ˈtralɪti/
More example sentences
  • There is no trend from dextrality to sinistrality, but rather large clades characterized by one form or the other, sometimes with large-ish subclades of the complementary type.
  • Further evidence that species-level sinistrality originated in environments where predator-induced selection is weak comes from the biology of living left-handed species.
  • Such selection is inimical to the evolution of traits like sinistrality that, at least in their early stages of development, are accompanied by mildly deleterious side effects.


More example sentences
  • Both species described here are sinistrally coiled, but a similar pattern of ornamentation is present on two Pennsylvanian species that are dextrally coiled.
  • The outer shell surface of both sinistrally coiled species of Crassimarginata is ornamented by distinct costae, but the dextrally coiled shells of Yukonoconcha seem to be smooth.
  • The sinistrally transtensional Louisburgh Basin contains PrIdolI fluviatile sediments and, probably, dates the end of transpressional deformation.

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a slit made by cutting with a saw