Definition of soft-shelled in English:

soft-shelled

adjective

  • 1Having a soft shell. Chiefly in the names of animals, especially a softshell turtle or the softshell clam.

  • 2Originally and chiefly US. That adopts or advocates a moderate course or policy in politics or religion; = "softshell" Chiefly in "soft-shelled Baptist"noun = softshell Baptist.

Origin

Early 17th century; earliest use found in Randle Cotgrave (fl. 1587–?1630), lexicographer. From soft + shelled.

Pronunciation

soft-shelled

/ˈsɒf(t)ʃɛld/