Meaning of tagma in English:


Pronunciation /ˈtaɡmə/


  • (in the bodies of arthropods and some other segmented animals) a morphologically distinct region, typically comprising several adjoining segments, such as the head, thorax, and abdomen of insects.

    ‘As defined by Collins, Dinocarids are bilaterally symmetrical arthropods with a body divided into two principal tagmata, recalling the prosoma and opisthosoma of chelicerates, and a non-mineralised cuticle.’
    • ‘The chelicerate body plan is characterized by two tagmata, the prosoma, including head structures, and the opisthosoma.’
    • ‘All hexapods have a body divided into three basic tagmata - head, thorax, and abdomen - and three pairs of thoracic legs.’
    • ‘Ventral appendages suggest a different pattern of tagmosis, especially if tagmata are defined as zones of functional specialization, as is commonly the case when considering arthropod appendages.’
    • ‘The distinct adult thorax and pygidia evident in some trilobites probably do deserve recognition as separate tagmata, but this may not be the case among all trilobites.’


Early 20th century from Greek, literally ‘something arranged’, from tassein ‘set in order’.