One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
In a bivalve mollusc: the resilient central part of the shell hinge, which tends to force apart the two valves and is composed chiefly of fibrous conchiolin.
Late 19th century; earliest use found in William Healey Dall (1845–1927), natural historian, paleontologist, and malacologist. From either resili- or classical Latin resilīre to jump back, recoil + -um, after Latin nouns ending in -um.
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