- any of certain small, terrestrial crustaceans of the genera Oniscus, Armadillidium, etc., having a flattened, elliptical body.
Origin of wood louse
First recorded in 1605–15
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for woodlouse
Up to the present this is the only woodlouse which has been found in the nests of British ants.
They lie now where the woodlouse may eat them if it has so lowly an appetite.The Book of This and That
One of the few people who had not been at the fire was our friend Woodlouse.Garman and Worse
Alexander Lange Kielland
Doctor Fernie gives some interesting extracts with regard to the hog-louse and the woodlouse.
Professor Woodlouse thought that he and his brother scholars, by lying hid and being quiet, might maybe catch a live one.Sketches New and Old, Complete
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
- any of various small terrestrial isopod crustaceans of the genera Oniscus, Porcellio, etc, which have a flattened segmented body and occur in damp habitatsSee also pill bug
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
Word Origin and History for woodlouse
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper