One of a pair of elongated, often segmented appendages usually found near the mouth in invertebrate organisms such as mollusks, crustaceans, and insects, the functions of which include sensation, locomotion, and feeding. Also called palpus.
[French palpe, from New Latin palpus, from Latin, a touching; see pāl- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
palpal (pălpəl) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.