acquired character

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acquired character

n.
A change of function or structure in an organism made in response to the environment. Also called acquired characteristic.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

acquired′ char′acter


n.
a noninheritable trait that results from certain environmental influences.
[1875–80]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
If it could be shown that our domestic varieties manifested a strong tendency to reversion,--that is, to lose their acquired characters, whilst kept under unchanged conditions, and whilst kept in a considerable body, so that free intercrossing might check, by blending together, any slight deviations of structure, in such case, I grant that we could deduce nothing from domestic varieties in regard to species.
Canalization of development and inheritance of acquired characters. Nature 150:563-565, 1942.
Most biology texts villify Lamarck's concept of "inheritance of acquired characters" and leave the impression that all acquired characters are never transmitted to offspring.