AskDefine | Define zoologist

The Collaborative Dictionary

Zoologist \Zo*ol"o*gist\, n. [Cf. F. zoologiste.] One who is well versed in Zoology. [1913 Webster]

Word Net

zoologist n : a specialist in the branch of biology dealing with animals [syn: animal scientist]



  1. a person who studies zoology


a person who studies zoology
Zoology (from Greek ζῴον, zoon, "animal" + λόγος, "logos", "knowledge") is the biological discipline which involves the study of animals.


The pronunciation of "zoology" is /zoʊˈɑləʤɪ/; however, an alternative pronunciation is /zuˈɑləʤɪ/. Traditionally (and more properly), the word was pronounced with the first syllable rhyming with "toe", followed by "-ology". Recently, it has become more common to pronounce the first syllable as "zoo". The word zoology originates from the Greek zoion, meaning animal, and logos, meaning study.

Subfields of zoology

The study of animal life is, of course, ancient: but as 'zoology' it is relatively modern, for what we call biology was known as 'natural history' at the start of the nineteenth century. During the lifetime of Charles Darwin, natural history turned from a gentlemanly pursuit to a modern scientific activity. Zoology as we know it was first established in German and British universities. The institution of zoology training in British universities was mainly established by Thomas Henry Huxley. His ideas were centered on the morphology of animals: he was himself the greatest comparative anatomist of the second half of the nineteenth century. His courses were composed of lectures and laboratory practical classes; and his system became widely spread.
There was much left out by Huxley, especially the study of animals in their environment, which had been the main stimulus for both Darwin and Alfred Wallace (who both came up with the idea of natural selection). The fact that neither Darwin nor Wallace ever held a university teaching post may have contributed to this rather startling omission. Gradually Huxley's comparative anatomy was supplemented by other much-needed methods. The field of zoology in the twentieth century mainly comprised these approaches:
  1. Comparative anatomy studies the structure of animals.
  2. The physiology of animals is studied under various fields including anatomy and embryology
  3. The common genetic and developmental mechanisms of animals and plants is studied in molecular biology, molecular genetics and developmental biology
  4. Ethology is the study of animal behavior.
  5. The ecology of animals is covered under behavioral ecology and other fields
  6. Evolutionary biology of both animals and plants is considered in the articles on evolution, population genetics, heredity, variation, Mendelism, reproduction.
  7. Systematics, cladistics, phylogenetics, phylogeography, biogeography and taxonomy classify and group species via common descent and regional associations.
  8. The various taxonomically-oriented disciplines such as mammalogy, herpetology, ornithology identify and classify species, and study the structures and mechanisms specific to those groups. Entomology is the study of insects, by far the largest group of animals.
  9. Palaeontology, including all that may be learnt of ancient environments.

Systems of classification

Morphography includes the systematic exploration and tabulation of the facts involved in the recognition of all the recent and extinct kinds of animals and their distribution in space and time. (1) The museum-makers of old days and their modern representatives the curators and describers of zoological collections, (2) early explorers and modern naturalist travelers and writers on zoo-geography, and (3) collectors of fossils and palaeontologists are the chief varieties of zoological workers coming under this heading. Gradually, since the time of Hunter and Cuvier, anatomical study has associated itself with the more superficial morphography until today no one considers a study of animal form of any value which does not include internal structure, histology and embryology in its scope.
The real dawn of zoology after the legendary period of the Middle Ages is connected with the name of an Englishman, Edward Edward Wotton, born at Oxford in 1492, who practised as a physician in London and died in 1555. He published a treatise De differentiis animalium at Paris in 1552. In many respects Wotton was simply an exponent of Aristotle, whose teaching, - with various fanciful additions, constituted the real basis of zoological knowledge throughout the Middle Ages. It was Wotton's merit that he rejected the legendary and fantastic accretions, and returned to Aristotle and the observation of nature.
The most ready means of noting the progress of zoology during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries is to compare Aristotle's classificatory conceptions of successive.

Notable zoologists

In alphabetical order by surname:

See also


zoologist in Afrikaans: Dierkunde
zoologist in Arabic: علم الحيوان
zoologist in Aragonese: Zoolochía
zoologist in Franco-Provençal: Zoologia
zoologist in Bengali: প্রাণিবিজ্ঞান
zoologist in Bosnian: Zoologija
zoologist in Breton: Loenoniezh
zoologist in Bulgarian: Зоология
zoologist in Catalan: Zoologia
zoologist in Czech: Zoologie
zoologist in Welsh: Sŵoleg
zoologist in Danish: Zoologi
zoologist in German: Zoologie
zoologist in Estonian: Zooloogia
zoologist in Modern Greek (1453-): Ζωολογία
zoologist in Spanish: Zoología
zoologist in Esperanto: Zoologio
zoologist in Basque: Zoologia
zoologist in Persian: جانورشناسی
zoologist in French: Zoologie
zoologist in Western Frisian: Soölogy
zoologist in Friulian: Zoologjie
zoologist in Irish: Zó-eolaíocht
zoologist in Galician: Zooloxía
zoologist in Korean: 동물학
zoologist in Hindi: प्राणी विज्ञान
zoologist in Upper Sorbian: Zoologija
zoologist in Croatian: Zoologija
zoologist in Ido: Zoologio
zoologist in Indonesian: Zoologi
zoologist in Interlingua (International Auxiliary Language Association): Zoologia
zoologist in Interlingue: Zoologie
zoologist in Ossetian: Зоологи
zoologist in Icelandic: Dýrafræði
zoologist in Italian: Zoologia
zoologist in Hebrew: זואולוגיה
zoologist in Javanese: Zoologi
zoologist in Kannada: ಪ್ರಾಣಿಶಾಸ್ತ್ರ
zoologist in Georgian: ზოოლოგია
zoologist in Kurdish: Zoolojî
zoologist in Ladino: Zoolojia
zoologist in Latin: Zoologia
zoologist in Latvian: Zooloģija
zoologist in Luxembourgish: Zoologie
zoologist in Lithuanian: Zoologija
zoologist in Hungarian: Zoológia
zoologist in Macedonian: Зоологија
zoologist in Malay (macrolanguage): Zoologi
zoologist in Dutch: Zoölogie
zoologist in Japanese: 動物学
zoologist in Norwegian: Zoologi
zoologist in Norwegian Nynorsk: Zoologi
zoologist in Narom: Zoologie
zoologist in Occitan (post 1500): Zoologia
zoologist in Low German: Zoologie
zoologist in Polish: Zoologia
zoologist in Portuguese: Zoologia
zoologist in Romanian: Zoologie
zoologist in Quechua: Suwuluhiya
zoologist in Russian: Зоология
zoologist in Scots: Zoology
zoologist in Albanian: Zoologjia
zoologist in Sicilian: Zuoluggìa
zoologist in Simple English: Zoology
zoologist in Slovak: Zoológia
zoologist in Slovenian: Zoologija
zoologist in Serbian: Зоологија
zoologist in Serbo-Croatian: Zoologija
zoologist in Finnish: Eläintiede
zoologist in Swedish: Zoologi
zoologist in Tamil: விலங்கியல்
zoologist in Tetum: Zoolojia
zoologist in Thai: สัตววิทยา
zoologist in Vietnamese: Động vật học
zoologist in Tajik: Зоология
zoologist in Turkish: Zooloji
zoologist in Ukrainian: Зоологія
zoologist in Urdu: حیوانیات
zoologist in Volapük: Nimav
zoologist in Yiddish: זאאלאגיע
zoologist in Contenese: 動物學
zoologist in Chinese: 动物学
Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1