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[thrips] /θrɪps/
noun, plural thrips.
any of several minute insects of the order Thysanoptera, that have long, narrow wings fringed with hairs and that infest and feed on a wide variety of weeds and crop plants.
Origin of thrips
1650-60; < New Latin < Greek thríps (singular) woodworm Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for thrips
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Of these, mealy-bug, red-spider, thrips and mildew are most troublesome.

  • thrips are readily controlled by means of nicotine-sulphate.

  • Brown and blackish spots on Pears are caused by a species of thrips.

    Disease in Plants H. Marshall Ward
  • They were commonly stated to be pollinated by thrips and other insects.

    Cocoa and Chocolate Arthur W. Knapp
  • thrips, another small insect, is sometimes troublesome but not often and is now easily controlled by applications of nicotine.

  • Grape-growers commonly call these insects "thrips," a name, however, which really belongs to a very different class of insects.

  • The thrips and slugs on rose bushes can nearly always be kept in check if one can spray or syringe his plants frequently.

  • No chance of thrips flourishing unsuspected in this house, nor of slugs following their horrid appetite from pot to pot unnoticed.

    The Woodlands Orchids Frederick Boyle
  • thrips, order Hemiptera, are insects so minute as scarcely to be perceptible to the naked eye.

British Dictionary definitions for thrips


noun (pl) thrips
any of various small slender-bodied insects of the order Thysanoptera, typically having piercing mouthparts and narrow feathery wings and feeding on plant sap. Some species are serious plant pests
Word Origin
C18: via New Latin from Greek: woodworm
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
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