atavism


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at·a·vism

 (ăt′ə-vĭz′əm)
n.
1. The reappearance of a characteristic in an organism after several generations of absence.
2. An individual or a part that exhibits atavism. Also called throwback.
3. The return of a trait or recurrence of previous behavior after a period of absence.

[French atavisme, from Latin atavus, ancestor : atta, father + avus, grandfather; see awo- in Indo-European roots.]

at′a·vist n.
at′a·vis′tic adj.
at′a·vis′ti·cal·ly adv.

atavism

(ˈætəˌvɪzəm)
n
1. (Biology) the recurrence in a plant or animal of certain primitive characteristics that were present in an ancestor but have not occurred in intermediate generations
2. reversion to a former or more primitive type
[C19: from French atavisme, from Latin atavus strictly: great-grandfather's grandfather, probably from atta daddy + avus grandfather]
ˈatavist n
atavic adj

at•a•vism

(ˈæt əˌvɪz əm)

n.
1.
a. the reappearance in an individual of characteristics of some remote ancestor that have been absent in intervening generations.
b. an individual embodying such a reversion.
2. reversion to an earlier type; throwback.
[1825–35; < Latin atav(us) remote ancestor (at-, akin to atta familiar name for a grandfather + avus grandfather, forefather) + -ism]
at′a•vist, n.
at`a•vis′tic, adj.
at`a•vis′ti•cal•ly, adv.

atavism

the reappearance in the present of a characteristic belonging to a remote ancestor. — atavist, n. — atavistic, adj.
See also: Ancestors
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.atavism - a reappearance of an earlier characteristic
recurrence, return - happening again (especially at regular intervals); "the return of spring"
Translations
atavismus
atavismi
atavisme

atavism

[ˈætəvɪzəm] Natavismo m

atavism

nAtavismus m

at·a·vism

n. atavismo, reproducción de rasgos y características ancestrales.
References in classic literature ?
In our day we have progressed to a point where such sentiments mark weakness and atavism. It will not be well for you to permit Tars Tarkas to learn that you hold such degenerate sentiments, as I doubt that he would care to entrust such as you with the grave responsibilities of maternity."
Perhaps some deeprooted atavism urges the wanderer back to lands which his ancestors left in the dim beginnings of history.
What to you the friendship of Lop-Ear, the warm lure of the Swift One, the lust and the atavism of Red-Eye?
He was too decided an atavism to draw the crowd's admiration.
He was a magnificent atavism, a man so purely primitive that he was of the type that came into the world before the development of the moral nature.
It was after tea on a summer evening, and the conversation, which had roamed in a desultory, spasmodic fashion from golf clubs to the causes of the change in the obliquity of the ecliptic, came round at last to the question of atavism and hereditary aptitudes.
By some quirk of atavism, a certain portion of that early self's language had come down to him as a racial memory.
Our desire for more restrictive rules is part of the atavism argument Adam James Tebble (2009) discusses.
They cover rethinking the order of time, atavism and heredity, nature and culture, poetics of time, and biology and ideology.
But I now realise that he could very well be an unwitting ideologue for atavism.
Therefore the erotic performance at the funeral is just a cultural atavism."
As CRP functions have been taken over by antibodies with time, CRP may well be an atavism in the human immune system.