One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Inclined to cause or undergo division into separate parts or groups.‘the fissiparous tendencies innate in tribalism’‘she was unsuccessful in holding a fissiparous membership together’
- ‘We have too many fissiparous tendencies in the two countries to take risks.’
- ‘There are clear limits to what voluntary organizations can do to remedy the fissiparous tendencies of an inherently selfish capitalism.’
- ‘Despite their fissiparous tendencies, they spread steadily.’
- ‘His coalition is broad and fissiparous, and the communists, who were the ruin of his last government, made a strong showing.’
- ‘During the past two weeks, the Union of the Parliaments has become more fissiparous than at any time since 1707.’
- 1.1Biology (of an organism) reproducing by fission.‘small fissiparous worms’
- ‘It is noted that fissiparous and cometforming starfish have entrained the regeneration pathway into their life cycle.’
- ‘Regeneration has been entrained to complete an asexual life cycle in fissiparous and comet-forming starfish.’
Mid 19th century: from Latin fissus, past participle of findere ‘split’, on the pattern of viviparous.
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