pseudopod n.

a temporary functional limb extended from the body of an amorphous being

  • [1927 ‘W. A. P. White’ Ye Goode Olde Ghoste Storie in Weird Tales Jan. 123/1 page image Anthony Boucher bibliography

    Slowly it advanced on me. I was helpless, spellbound, standing there motionless with the razor in my hand. An arm appeared from nowhere on the shape, seemingly projected like the pseudopod of a protozoan.]

  • 1929 D. H. Keller Human Termites in Science Wonder Stories Oct. ix. 419/1 page image David H. Keller, M.D. bibliography

    The Thing stretched a pseudopod of protoplasm towards Smithson’s face. Susanne saw it slowly slide over the floor, and then a little part of it started to go up Smithson’s right nostril.

  • 1930 R. F. Starzl Planet of Dread in Astounding Stories of Super-Science Aug. 156/2 page image R. F. Starzl bibliography

    What they saw gave their jaded nerves an unpleasant thrill—a mass of doughy matter of a blue-green color about three feet in diameter, with something that resembled a cyst filled with transparent liquid near its center. And this thing began to flow along the rods, much as tar flows. From the mass extended a pseudopod; touched Gunga on the arm. Instantly the arm was raw and bleeding. Terrified, immovable, he writhed in angony [sic]. The pseudopod returned to the main mass, disappearing into its interior with the strip of bloody skin.

  • 1934 R. Z. Gallun Old Faithful in Astounding Dec. v. 125/1 page image Raymond Z. Gallun bibliography

    A score of nerve-filaments, fine, almost, as human hair, darted out from the chitinous shell that protected them and roved caressingly over the lump of protoplasm. Immediately it responded to the gentle touch of the strange creature that had sired it. its delicate integument quivered, and a thin pseudopod oozed up from its jellylike form and enveloped the nerve filaments of Number 774. For minutes the two remained thus, perfectly motionless.

  • 1943 F. Leiber Gather, Darkness! in Astounding June 144/1 page image Fritz Leiber bibliography

    The cloud seemed to make a last despairing effort, thrusting out an inky pseudopod toward the door of the chamber, as if to make a way of escape for the witches.

  • 1948 ‘W. Tenn’ Brooklyn Project in Planet Stories Fall 95/1 page image William Tenn bibliography

    ‘—a very difficult problem. The question before us: should we shllk or shouldn’t we shllk?’ He was hardly speaking English now; in fact, for some time, he hadn’t been speaking at all. He had been stating his thoughts by slapping one pseudopod against the other—as he always had...

  • 1951 R. A. Heinlein Puppet Masters in Galaxy Oct. xix. 140/1 page image Robert A. Heinlein bibliography

    The slug slithered closer. It was a good two feet away when it grew a pseudopod—slowly, at first, a stalk that weaved around like a cobra. Then it lashed out and struck the ape on a foot.

  • 1968 L. Carter & L. S. de Camp Conan and the Cenotaph in Worlds of Fantasy Sept. 76/2 page image L. Sprague de Camp Lin Carter bibliography

    As Conan, frozen with horror, watched, the dweller on the top of the monolith sent a trickle of jelly groping down the shaft toward him. The slippery pseudopod slithered over the smooth surface of the stone. Conan began to understand the source of the stains that discolored the face of the monolith.

  • 1970 J. Blish Spock Must Die! TK 51 page image James Blish bibliography

    The bulge in the warp field grew, gradually becoming a blunt pseudopod groping into subspace. From the Enterprise it was like staring down a dim tunnel, with the twin beams as its axis. From the depths of his memory there came to Kirk a biology-class vision of the long glass spike of a radiolarian, a microscopic marine animal, with protoplasm streaming along it, mindless and voracious.

  • 1977 P. J. Farmer Dark Design xlix. 281 page image Philip José Farmer bibliography

    Somehow, without being aware of it, he had spun around and was facing the owner of the voice. It was a shadowy figure in the clouds swirling in the pilothouse. It moved toward him, stopped, and reached out a vague arm. A pseudopod flicked a switch on the panel.

  • 1990 D. Duane Doctor’s Orders ii. 43 page image Diane Duane bibliography

    One of the creatures in the front circle shook itself all over and, still shaking, moved very, very slowly toward Spock. He didn't move a muscle. The creature put out a long slender pseudopod, gleaming in the sunshine like suddenly blown glass, and poked Spock's boot with it.

  • 2002 D. Brin Kiln People vii. 74 page image David Brin bibliography

    The maestra has guests. Four are females, identical, with frizzy pink hair and earthen-red skin so dark it's almost umber. They look nervous, agitated. One stares constantly at a vid-screen, nodding and grunting. A sluglike string of flesh seems to ooze out the side of her head, clamping a pseudopod onto an electronic sensor pad.

  • 2011 C. Miéville Embassytown 72 page image China Miéville bibliography

    The first time I saw exots of species I’d not grown up with was in a rowdy town on a tiny world we called Sebzi. I was introduced to a group of hive-things. I’ve no idea what they were, or from where their race originated. I’ve seen none of their kind since. One came forward on a pseudopod, leaned its hourglass body toward me and from a tiny snag-toothed ventricle said, in perfect Anglo-Ubiq, ‘Ms. Cho. It’s a pleasure.’

  • 2019 C. J. Anders City in the Middle of the Night 51 Charlie Jane Anders bibliography

    On one of the chairs, a marmot named Cyrus sleeps, with rippling golden fur and blue velvety pseudopods that can extrude or disappear as needed. Most people have never seen a marmot before, let alone a full-grown one that weighs as much as a human toddler. Some of them dare to lean forward and touch Cyrus, and his contented rumble first startles and then relaxes them.


Research requirements

antedating 1927

Research History
Suggested, and most cites submitted, by Ben Ostrowsky.

Last modified 2021-09-27 15:06:04
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.