Definition of taxis in English:



  • 1Surgery
    [mass noun] The restoration of displaced bones or organs by manual pressure alone.

    • ‘He sent for a surgeon, who attempted to reduce the hernia by the taxis.’
  • 2Biology
    A motion or orientation of a cell, organism, or part in response to an external stimulus.

    Compare with kinesis
    • ‘A taxis is a behavioural reaction where an animal moves directly towards (positive taxis) or away (negative taxis) from the source of the stimulus.’
  • 3Linguistics
    [mass noun] The systematic arrangement of linguistic units (phonemes, morphemes, words, phrases, or clauses) in linear sequence.

    • ‘The only remaining factor to which the difference in meaning between (1) and (2) can be ascribed is the arrangement of the morphemes (the taxis).’


Mid 18th century (in taxis): from Greek, literally arrangement, from tassein arrange. taxis dates from the late 19th century.