• synonyms


[der-map-ter-uh n]
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  1. Also der·map·ter·ous. belonging or pertaining to the insect order Dermaptera, comprising the earwigs.
  1. any of numerous brown to black, small to medium-sized nocturnal insects of the order Dermaptera, widely distributed in warm, moist areas, characterized by a slender, elongated, flattened body with pincerlike appendages at the tail end of the abdomen.

Origin of dermapteran

1860–65; < New Latin Dermapter(a) (irregular < Greek dermóptera (see dermopteran), or a deliberate alteration of Dermoptera to keep the taxa distinct) + -an
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for dermapteran


  1. any insect of the order Dermaptera, the earwigs
  1. of, relating to, or belonging to this order

Word Origin

C19: from Greek derma (see derma 1) + pteron wing
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

dermapteran in Science


  1. Any of various insects of the order Dermaptera, having an elongated flattened body equipped with a pair of pincerlike appendages at the posterior end. Dermapterans include the earwigs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.