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  • WordNet 3.6
    • n Malacostraca largest subclass of Crustacea including most of the well-known marine, freshwater, and terrestrial crustaceans: crabs; lobsters; shrimps; sow bugs; beach flies
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • prop. n. pl Malacostraca (Zoöl) A subclass of Crustacea, including Arthrostraca and Thoracostraca, or all those higher than the Entomostraca.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n Malacostraca One of two main divisions of the Crustacea proper; the division which is contrasted with Entomostraca. By Latreille the group was divided into five orders, Decapoda, Stomapoda, Lœmodipoda, Amphipoda, and Isopoda. Zoölogically speaking, its limits have fluctuated so far and so often with different writers that no comprehensive yet exclusive definition is practicable, and the general tendency is now to ignore the term, along with Entomostraca. Huxley, however, retains both.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
NL., from Gr. malako`s soft + shell of a testacean


In literature:

"Lives of Eminent Zoologists, from Aristotle to Linnæus" by William MacGillivray
In the Malacostraca it is absent in the adult, or persists only in a vestigial condition, as in some Decapoda and Schizopoda.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 7, Slice 7" by Various
The higher division of Mailed Crabs (Malacostraca) have likewise originated out of the common Nauplius form.
"The History of Creation, Vol. II (of 2)" by Ernst Haeckel