Part of speech: adjective
Origin: Latin, early 18th century
(Botany — of a compound leaf) having leaflets arranged on either side of the stem, typically in pairs opposite each other.
(Zoology — especially of an invertebrate animal) having branches, tentacles, etc., on each side of an axis, like the vanes of a feather.
Examples of Pinnate in a sentence
"The tree had delicate, pinnate leaves."
"Feathers have a pinnate, symmetrical structure."
Popularity Over Time
This word comes from the Latin “pinnatus,” meaning “feathered.” This stems from “pinna,” meaning “feather, wing.”
Did you Know?
Pinnate leaves can be separated into two categories: imparipinnate and paripinnate. Imparipinnate, or odd-pinnate, means the leaflets are arranged on both sides with an odd terminal leaflet up top. Paripinnate, or even-pinnate, lacks the terminal leaf.