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||Brach`i*op"o*da (&?;), n. [NL., from Gr.
&?; arm + -poda.] (Zoöl.) A class of Molluscoidea
having a symmetrical bivalve shell, often attached by a fleshy
&fist; Within the shell is a pair of "arms," often long and spirally
coiled, bearing rows of ciliated tentacles by which a current of water is
made to flow into the mantle cavity, bringing the microscopic food to the
mouth between the bases of the arms. The shell is both opened and closed by
special muscles. They form two orders; Lyopoma, in which the shell
is thin, and without a distinct hinge, as in Lingula; and
Arthropoma, in which the firm calcareous shell has a regular hinge,
as in Rhynchonella. See Arthropomata.
- Webster's Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
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