medusa(redirected from medusae)
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Me·dus·a(mĭ-do͞o′sə, -zə, -dyo͞o′-)
n. Greek Mythology
The Gorgon who was killed by Perseus.
[Middle English Meduse, from Latin Medūsa, from Greek Medousa, from feminine present participle of medein, to protect, rule over; see med- in Indo-European roots.]
me·du·sa(mĭ-do͞o′sə, -zə, -dyo͞o′-)
n. pl. me·du·sas or me·du·sae (-sē, -zē)
A body form of certain cnidarians such as jellyfish, consisting of a dome-shaped structure with a mouth underneath surrounded by tentacles, and in most species constituting the free-swimming sexual stage of the organism.
[Latin Medūsa, Medusa (from the Medusa's snaky locks); see Medusa.]
(Classical Myth & Legend) Greek myth a mortal woman who was transformed by Athena into one of the three Gorgons. Her appearance was so hideous that those who looked directly at her were turned to stone. Perseus eventually slew her. See also Pegasus1
Meˈdusan, Meˈdusal adj
n, pl -sas or -sae (-ziː)
2. (Zoology) Also called: medusoid or medusan one of the two forms in which a coelenterate exists. It has a jelly-like umbrella-shaped body, is free swimming, and produces gametes. Compare polyp
[C18: from the likeness of its tentacles to the snaky locks of Medusa]
meˈdusan, meˈdusal adj
me•du•sa(məˈdu sə, -zə, -ˈdyu-)
n., pl. -sas, -sae (-sē, -zē).
the free-swimming body form in the life cycle of a jellyfish or other coelenterate, usu. dome-shaped with tentacles.
[1750–60; after Medusa, alluding to the Gorgon's snaky locks]
Me•du•sa(məˈdu sə, -zə, -ˈdyu-)
the only mortal of the three Gorgons: decapitated by Perseus.
[< Latin < Greek Médousa]
A cnidarian in its free-swimming stage. Medusas are bell-shaped, with tentacles hanging down around a central mouth. Jellyfish are medusas, while corals and sea anemones lack a medusa stage and exist only as polyps. Compare polyp.
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|Noun||1.||Medusa - (Greek mythology) a woman transformed into a Gorgon by Athena; she was slain by Perseus|
Greek mythology - the mythology of the ancient Greeks
Gorgon - (Greek mythology) any of three winged sister monsters and the mortal Medusa who had live snakes for hair; a glance at Medusa turned the beholder to stone
|2.||medusa - one of two forms that coelenterates take: it is the free-swimming sexual phase in the life cycle of a coelenterate; in this phase it has a gelatinous umbrella-shaped body and tentacles|
Cnidaria, Coelenterata, phylum Cnidaria, phylum Coelenterata - hydras; polyps; jellyfishes; sea anemones; corals