The Coleoptera /ko?li???pt?r?/ order of insects is commonly called beetles. The word "coleoptera" is from the Greek ??????, koleos, meaning "sheath"; and ??????, pteron, meaning "wing", thus "sheathed wing", because most beetles have two pairs of wings, the front pair, the "elytra", being hardened and thickened into a sheath-like, or shell-like, protection for the rear pair, and for the rear part of the beetle's body. The superficial consistency of most beetles' morphology, in particular their possession of elytra, has long suggested that the Coleoptera are monophyletic, but growing evidence indicates this is unjustified, there being arguments, for example, in favour of allocating the current suborder Adephaga their own order, or very likely even more than one.
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