La"marck"ism(?), n. [From Lamarck, a distinguished French naturalist.] (Biol.) The theory that structural variations, characteristic of species and genera, are produced in animals and plants by the direct influence of physical environments, and esp., in the case of animals, by effort, or by use or disuse of certain organs. It is a discredited theory, not believed by modern biologists.
[1913 Webster +PJC]
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Sat 15th December 2018