Pelican

Definition of Pelican

Pel´i`can   Pronunciation: pĕl´ĭ`kan
n.1.(Zool.) Any large webfooted bird of the genus Pelecanus, of which about a dozen species are known. They have an enormous bill, to the lower edge of which is attached a pouch in which captured fishes are temporarily stored.
2.(Old Chem.) A retort or still having a curved tube or tubes leading back from the head to the body for continuous condensation and redistillation.
Frigate pelican
(Zool.) the frigate bird. See under Frigate.
Pelican fish
(Zool.) deep-sea fish (Eurypharynx pelecanoides) of the order Lyomeri, remarkable for the enormous development of the jaws, which support a large gular pouch.
Pelican flower
(Bot.) the very large and curiously shaped blossom of a climbing plant (Aristolochia grandiflora) of the West Indies; also, the plant itself.
Pelican ibis
(Zool.) a large Asiatic wood ibis (Tantalus leucocephalus). The head and throat are destitute of feathers; the plumage is white, with the quills and the tail greenish black.
Pelican in her piety
a representation of a pelican in the act of wounding her breast in order to nourish her young with her blood; - a practice fabulously attributed to the bird, on account of which it was adopted as a symbol of the Redeemer, and of charity.
Pelican's foot
(Zool.) a marine gastropod shell of the genus Aporrhais, esp. Aporrhais pes-pelicani of Europe.

Related Words

family Pelecanidae, Old world white pelican, Pelecanidae, pelecaniform seabird, Pelecanus erythrorhynchos, Pelecanus onocrotalus, white pelican
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