One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
treated as singular The study of skin markings or patterns on fingers, hands, and feet, and its application, especially in criminology.
- ‘I invite all of those skeptics to read one of my latest works on the field and become introduced to the scientific study of hand appearances, called dermatoglyphics.’
- ‘The following physical features were noted: cleft lip and palate, overlapping fingers, low-set ears, simian creases, obscure dermatoglyphics, and hypoplastic external genitalia.’
- ‘Thus, for the twins concordant for sexual orientation, the null hypothesis that there are no differences in dermatoglyphics between twins cannot be rejected.’
- ‘The former is found on the palms and soles and has a thick outer layer that contains dermatoglyphics, a fancy term for fingerprints.’
- ‘This visionary scientist also laid down the foundations of dermatoglyphics.’
1920s: from dermato- ‘skin’ + Greek gluphikos ‘carved’ (from gluphē ‘carving’).
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