Sexual selection
Sexual Sex"u*al, a. [L. sexualis, fr. sexus sex: cf. F. sexuel.] Of or pertaining to sex, or the sexes; distinguishing sex; peculiar to the distinction and office of male or female; relating to the distinctive genital organs of the sexes; proceeding from, or based upon, sex; as, sexual characteristics; sexual intercourse, connection, or commerce; sexual desire; sexual diseases; sexual generation. [1913 Webster]

{Sexual dimorphism} (Biol.), the condition of having one of the sexes existing in two forms, or varieties, differing in color, size, etc., as in many species of butterflies which have two kinds of females.

{Sexual method} (Bot.), a method of classification proposed by Linn[ae]us, founded mainly on difference in number and position of the stamens and pistils of plants.

{Sexual selection} (Biol.), the selective preference of one sex for certain characteristics in the other, such as bright colors, musical notes, etc.; also, the selection which results from certain individuals of one sex having more opportunities of pairing with the other sex, on account of greater activity, strength, courage, etc.; applied likewise to that kind of evolution which results from such sexual preferences. --Darwin. [1913 Webster]

In these cases, therefore, natural selection seems to have acted independently of sexual selection. --A. R. Wallace. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sexual selection — n natural selection for characters that confer success in competition for a mate as distinguished from competition with other species also the choice of a mate based on a preference for certain characteristics (as color or bird song) * * *… …   Medical dictionary

  • Sexual selection — This article is about the evolutionary concept. For the selection of the sex of offspring, see sex selection. Goldie s Bird of paradise: Ornamented male above; female below. Paradesia decora by John Gerrard Keulemans (d.1912) Sexual selection, a… …   Wikipedia

  • sexual selection — noun A type of natural selection, where members of the sexes acquire distinct forms either because See Also: sexual method, sexual dimorphism …   Wiktionary

  • sexual selection — noun Date: 1859 natural selection for characters that confer success in competition for a mate as distinguished from competition with other species; also the choice of a mate based on a preference for certain characteristics (as color or bird… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • sexual selection — Biol. a special type of natural selection in which the sexes acquire distinct forms either because the members of one sex choose mates with particular features or because in the competition for mates among the members of one sex only those with… …   Universalium

  • sexual selection — noun Biology natural selection arising through preference by one sex for certain characteristics in individuals of the other sex …   English new terms dictionary

  • sexual selection — sex′ual selec′tion n. bio evo the Darwinian theory that the selection of mates is based on attractive features, as coloration or song in birds …   From formal English to slang

  • sexual selection — /ˌsɛkʃuəl səˈlɛkʃən/ (say .sekshoohuhl suh lekshuhn) noun the theory, first propounded by Darwin, that the selection by some animals of attractive mates has resulted in the evolution of features which are in other respects disadvantageous …   Australian English dictionary

  • sexual selection — noun : the choice of a mate on a basis of various attractive characters (as color or bird song) …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sexual selection in human evolution — When Charles Darwin initially proposed his theory on sexual selection, there was considerable scepticism on its application to human evolution. More recently, the role of sexual selection in human evolution has begun to gain wide… …   Wikipedia

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