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aculeus

[uh-kyoo-lee-uh s]
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noun, plural a·cu·le·i [uh-kyoo-lee-ahy] /əˈkyu liˌaɪ/.
  1. Also acus. the modified ovipositor or sting of certain hymenopterous insects.
  2. prickle(def 2).
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Origin of aculeus

1820–30; < Latin: sting, barb, equivalent to acu(s) needle + -leus noun suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for aculeus

aculeus

noun
  1. a prickle or spine, such as the thorn of a rose
  2. a sting or ovipositor
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Word Origin

C19: from Latin, diminutive of acus needle
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