Meaning of atavism

at•a•vism

Pronunciation: (at'u-viz"um), [key]
— n.
    1. the reappearance in an individual of characteristics of some remote ancestor that have been absent in intervening generations.
    2. an individual embodying such a reversion.
  1. reversion to an earlier type; throwback.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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