One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A genus of freshwater snails (pond snails) characterized by a rounded shell in the form of a plane spiral.
Mid 18th century; earliest use found in John Berkenhout (?1730–1791), physician and writer. From scientific Latin Planorbis, genus name (E. L. Geoffroy Traité sommaire des coquilles 12, after use as a specific name (in the genus Helix) by Linnaeus) from post-classical Latin Planorbis (J. Petiver Gazophylacii 3; also as Plan-Orbis) from classical Latin plānus + orbis.
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