Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR INSECTS

The west was paling, and the August insects stirred the air with their crooning chirp.

All at once the poignant and disgusting attack of the insects ceased.

The caterpillar, for example, resembles the worm which is the ancestor of the insects.

These warm regions, you know, have multitudes of insects that we never see.

There are eleven of these insects and unless we can get the jump on them, they'll do us.

I have several, which I feed on mushrooms, meat, and insects.

By this means of practice, the bushes have been constantly kept healthy, fruitful, and free from the annoyance of insects.

Where peach and nectarine trees are managed with this paint, they are very rarely either hide-bound or attacked by insects.

When the bottles are filled with insects, the liquor must be poured into another vial, and the wasps crushed on the ground.

When old it is sometimes hollow on account of the insects mining it.

WORD ORIGIN

c.1600, from Latin (animal) insectum "(animal) with a notched or divided body," literally "cut into," from neuter past participle of insectare "to cut into, to cut up," from in- "into" (see in- (2)) + secare "to cut" (see section (n.)). Pliny's loan-translation of Greek entomon "insect" (see entomology), which was Aristotle's term for this class of life, in reference to their "notched" bodies.

First in English in 1601 in Holland's translation of Pliny. Translations of Aristotle's term also form the usual word for "insect" in Welsh (trychfil, from trychu "cut" + mil "animal"), Serbo-Croatian (zareznik, from rezati "cut"), Russian (nasekomoe, from sekat "cut"), etc.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR INSECTS

vermin

nounnoxious or annoying small animals or insects
Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.