noun, plural nau·ti·lus·es, nau·ti·li [nawt-l-ahy, not-] /ˈnɔt lˌaɪ, ˈnɒt-/ for 1, 2.

  1. Also called chambered nautilus, pearly nautilus. any cephalopod of the genus Nautilus, having a spiral, chambered shell with pearly septa.
  2. paper nautilus.
  3. (initial capital letter) the first nuclear-powered submarine launched by the U.S. Navy.

noun plural -luses or -li (-ˌlaɪ)

  1. any cephalopod mollusc of the genus Nautilus, esp the pearly nautilus
  2. short for paper nautilus

n.marine cephalopod, c.1600, from Latin nautilus, in Pliny a kind of marine snail (including also squid, cuttlefish, polyps, etc.), from Greek nautilos “paper nautilus,” literally “sailor,” from nautes “sailor,” from naus “ship” (see naval). The cephalopod formerly was thought to use its webbed arms as sails.

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