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Borrowed from Latin squāmōsus, from squāma (scale).


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈskweɪ.məs/, /ˈskwɑː.məs/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈskweɪ.moʊs/, /ˈskwɑ.moʊs/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪməs


squamous (comparative more squamous, superlative most squamous)

  1. Covered with, made of, or resembling scales; scaly.
    Synonyms: squamose, squamulose; see also Thesaurus:scaly
    Antonyms: esquamulose, scaleless
    • 1658, Sir Thomas Browne, The Garden of Cyrus (Folio Society 2007), page 180
      In the squamous heads of Scabius, Knapweed, and the elegant Jacea Pinea, and in the Scaly composure of the Oak-Rose, which some years most aboundeth.
    • 1933, H. P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald, Out of the Aeons
      I might call it gigantic - tentacled - proboscidian - octopus-eyed - semi-amorphous - plastic - partly squamous and partly rugose - ugh!
    • 1973, Kyril Bonfiglioli, Don't Point That Thing at Me (Penguin 2001), page 133
      We spread the papers on the least squamous section of the floor and lay down; the smell was not so bad at ground level.
    • 2001, Charles Stross, The Atrocity Archive (trade paperback 2006), page 66
      (And we'll never find out whether the last thought to pass through the mind of the captain of the Thresher was, "It's squamous and rugose," or simply, "It's squamous!")
  2. (anatomy) Of or pertaining to the squamosal bone; squamosal

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