One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A member of the extinct order Cotylosauria of primitive reptiles, chiefly of the Permian and Triassic periods, which were characterized by short limbs and a rather high, narrow, unfenestrated skull.
Late 19th century; earliest use found in The Century Illustrated Monthly Magazine. From scientific Latin Cotylosauria, order name: see -saur.
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