- The definition of polyphyletic is a group of organisms that are classified into the same group but came from different ancestors.
An example of polyphyletic is grouping warm-blooded animals together.
polyphyletic definition by Webster's New World
Biol. derived from more than one ancestral type
Origin: poly- plush phyletic
Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- polyphyletically adverb
polyphyletic definition by American Heritage Dictionary
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Relating to or characterized by development from more than one ancestral type.
- polˌy·phy·letˈi·cal·ly adverb
polyphyletic - Medical Definition
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
- Descended or derived from more than one ancestral stock or source.
- Of or being the theory that blood cells are derived from several different stem cells, depending on the particular blood cell type.
- polyphyletism noun
polyphyletic - Science Definition
Relating to a taxonomic group that does not include the common ancestor of the members of the group and whose members have two or more separate origins. A group that consists of flying vertebrates would be polyphyletic, as bats and birds independently evolved flight and do not share a common ancestor. Compare monophyletic, paraphyletic.