The definition of a tadpole is the young stage of an amphibian, it lives in water, has a tail and breaths through gills.
An example of a tadpole is the stage a toad is in before it gets legs and lungs for breathing outside of the water.
The aquatic larva of a frog or toad, having gills, a long, laterally compressed tail, and in early stages, no limbs. During metamorphosis of a tadpole into an adult, legs and lungs develop, and the tail gradually disappears.
The larva of certain amphibians, as frogs and toads, having gills and a tail and living in water: as it matures, the gills usually are lost and legs develop.
A young toad or frog in its larval stage of development that lives in water, has a tail and no legs, and, like a fish, breathes through gills.
The free-swimming larval stage of tunicates, having gill slits and a notochord.
Origin of tadpole
Middle English taddepoltadde, todetoadtoadpolheadpoll
American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
From Middle English, tad (“toad") and poll (“head").
Tadpole Sentence Examples
TADPOLE, a term often, but wrongly, applied indiscriminately to all Batrachian larvae.
In accordance with this view there would be also some probability in favour of regarding the collar nerve-tube of the Enteropneusta as the equivalent of the cerebral vesicle only of Amphioxus and the Ascidian tadpole, and also of the primary forebrain of vertebrates.
It is absurd to call the larva of a newt or of a Caecilian a tadpole, nor is the free-swimming embryo of a frog as it leaves the egg a tadpole.
Erasmus Darwin, the grandfather of Charles Darwin, set forth ',in' Zoonomia a much more definite theory of the relation of variation to evolution, and the following passage, cited by Clodd, clearly expresses it: "When we revolve in our minds the metamorphoses of animals, as from the tadpole to the frog; secondly, the changes produced by artificial cultivation, as in the breeds of horses, dogs and sheep; thirdly, the changes produced by conditions of climate and season, as in the sheep of warm climates being covered with hair instead of wool, and the hares and partridges of northern climates becoming white in winter; when, further, we observe the changes of structure produced by habit, as shewn especially by men of different occupations; or the changes produced by artificial mutilation and prenatal influences, as in the crossing of species and production of monsters; fourth, when we observe the essential unity of plan in all warmblooded animals - we are led to conclude that they have been alike produced from a single living filament."