Definition of cartilaginous fish in US English:

cartilaginous fish


  • A fish of a class distinguished by having a skeleton of cartilage rather than bone, including the sharks, rays, and chimeras.

    Class Chondrichthyes: subclasses Elasmobranchii (sharks and rays) and Hoplocephali (chimeras)

    Compare with bony fish
    • ‘By the late Devonian, 360 million years ago, early cartilaginous fish and bony fish were diversifying.’
    • ‘First appearing on Earth almost 450 million years ago, cartilaginous fish today include both fearsome predators and harmless mollusc-eaters (harmless, that is, unless you are a mollusc).’
    • ‘More recent research demonstrated that none of the five invertebrates tested, nor the one cartilaginous fish had these receptors.’
    • ‘An unorthodox scenario placing cartilaginous fish within bony fish has been suggested but has received no additional support.’