If the three principal organ-systems of the medusa, namely mouth, tentacles and umbrella, be considered in the light of phylogeny, it is evident that the manubrium bearing the mouth must be the oldest, as representing a common property of all the Coelentera, even of the gastrula embryo of all Enterozoa.
Polypi (including the Coelentera of later authorities and the Polyzoa).
Of these latter, two grades were further distinguished by Lankester - those which remain possessed of a single archenteric cavity and of two primary cell-layers (the Coelentera or Diploblastica), and those which by nipping off the archenteron give rise to two cavities, the coelom or body-cavity and the metenteron or gut (Coelomata or Triploblastica).
The Metazoa form two main branches; one, Parazoa, is but a small unproductive stock comprising only the Phylum Porifera or Sponges; the other, the great stem of the animal series Enterozoa, gives rise to a large number of diverging Phyla which it is necessary to assign to two levels or grades - a lower, Enterocoela (often called Coelentera), and a higher, Coelomocoela (often called Coelomata).
The structural features which the Mollusca do possess in common with other animals belonging to other great phyla of the animal kingdom are those characteristic of the Coelomata, one of the two great grades (the other and lower being that of the Coelentera) into which the higher animals; or Metazoa as distinguished from the Protozoa, are divided.
In the Coelentera, whatever subsequent changes of shape the little sac may undergo as it grows up to be polyp or jelly-fish, the original arch-enteron remains as the one cavity pervading all regions of the body.
Albinism is restricted to no particular class of the animal kingdom; for partial albinism at least is known to occur in Coelentera, worms, Crustacea, Myriapoda, Coleoptera,Arachnida and fishes.
COELENTERA, a group or grade of the animal kingdom, the zoological importance of which has risen considerably since the time (1887) of the publication of the first article under that heading in the Ency.
For the Coelentera thus restricted, the term Enterocoela, in contrast to Coelomocoela (the old Coelomata), was suggested by E.
From the more complex colonial Protozoa the Coelentera are readily separated by their possession of two distinct sets of cells, with diverse functions, arranged in two definite layers, - a condition found in no Protozoan.
The Coelentera, as contrasted with other Metazoa (but not Parazoa), consist of two layers of cells only, an outer layer or ectoderm, an inner layer or endoderm.
A second essential difference between Coelentera and other Metazoa (except Parazoa) is that in the former all spaces in the interior of the body are referable to a single cavity of endodermal origin, the "gas*ro-vascular cavity," often termed the coelenteron: the spaces are always originally continuous with one another, and are in almost every case permanently so.
In the Coelentera the ectoderm and endoderm are set apart from one another at a very early period in the life-history; generally either by delamination or invagination, processes described in the article Embryology.
The Coelentera may thus be briefly defined as Metazoa which exhibit two embryonic cell-layers only, - the ectoderm and endoderm, - their body-cavities being referable to a single cavity or coelenteron in the endoderm.
The Ctenophora are so aberrant in structure that it has been proposed to separate them from the Coelentera altogether: they are, however, theoretically deducible from an ancestor common to other Coelentera, but their extreme specialization precludes the idea of any close relationship with the rest.
It is reasonable to suppose that the Coelomata - animals in which the body-cavity is divided into a gut passing from mouth to anus and a hollow (coelom) surrounding it - were derived from the simpler Coelentera, in which the primitive body-cavity (archenteron) is not so divided, and has only one aperture serving as both mouth and anus.
We may, with Sedgwick, suppose the coelom to have originated by the enlargement and separation of pouches that pressed outwards from the archenteron into the thickened body-wall (such structures as the genital pouches of some Coelentera, not yet shut off from the rest of the cavity), and they would probably have been four in number and radially disposed about the central cavity.
The evolution of this cavity into a gut is foreshadowed in some Coelentera by the elliptical shape of the aperture, and by the development at its ends of a ciliated channel along which food is swept; we have only to suppose the approximation of the sides of the ellipse and their eventual fusion, to complete the transformation of the radially symmetrical Coelenterate into a bilaterally symmetrical Coelomate with mouth and anus at opposite ends of the long axis.
Linnaeus applied the Latin term Vermes to the modern zoological divisions Mollusca, Coelentera, Protozoa, Tunicata, Echinoderma (qq.v.), as well as to those forms which more modern zoologists have recognized as worms. As a matter of convenience the term Vermes or Vermidea is still employed, for instance in the International Catalogue of Zoological Literature and the Zoological Record, to cover a number of wormlike animals.
Such forms he distinguished as Coelentera, and showed that they had no special affinity with echinoderms, polyzoa, &c. He divided the Coelentera into a group Hydrozoa, in which the sexually produced embryos were usually set free from the surface of the body, and a group Actinozoa, in which the embryos are detached from the interior of the body and escape generally by the oral aperture.