One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A small, slender bipedal carnivorous dinosaur with long forelimbs, believed to be an evolutionary ancestor of birds.
- ‘Most skin impressions from dinosaurs indicate the presence of naked skin, except for integumentary structures in coelurosaurs that may have afforded thermal insulation.’
- ‘Recent studies have agreed that T. rex and the tyrannosaurs belong with the coelurosaurs, not with the carnosaurs as was originally believed.’
- ‘Predatory dinosaurs of the Jurassic included fearsome carnosaurs such as Allosaurus, small, fast coelurosaurs, and ceratosaurs such as Dilophosaurus.’
- ‘Around the same time the allosaurs appeared, another subgroup of the tetanurans, the coelurosaurs, also branched off.’
- ‘This little animal, Sinosauropteryx, is a fairly primitive coelurosaur, so you would not expect to see feathers on it.’
1950s: from Greek koilos ‘hollow’ + oura ‘tail’ + sauros ‘lizard’.
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