Definition of Anthozoa in US English:


plural noun

  • A large class of sedentary marine coelenterates that includes the sea anemones and corals. They are either solitary or colonial, and have a central mouth surrounded by tentacles.

    • ‘Color diversity and the corresponding complexity of the protein organization evolved independently in several Anthozoa lineages, as well as in Hydrozoa.’
    • ‘In the context of relationships among cnidarian taxa assigned the Linnaean rank of class, Anthozoa may be perceived as basal.’
    • ‘Their phylogenetic positions, within Medusozoa and Anthozoa respectively, do not provide any information about whether these animals retain ancestral states for other characters under study.’
    • ‘In any case, there is molecular evidence to suggest that the Anthozoa are the earliest branch of the phylum Cnidaria.’
    • ‘The Anthozoa (sea anemones and corals) possess only the polyp form.’


Modern Latin (plural), from Greek anthos ‘flower’ + zōia ‘animals’.