; subclass Actinopterygii, order Perciformes)
A monospecific family (Xiphias gladius) of marine fish that have a long, slightly flattened snout (‘sword’). These large fish can reach a length of 4.8 m. The pectoral fins are placed low on the body, opposite the large, but short-based, dorsal fin; the pelvic fins are absent. Like the related marlins (family Istiophoridae), the swordfish has a large, lunate tail fin, and it can swim very fast. It is distributed world-wide in warmer seas.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.