blow fly

or blow·fly



any of numerous dipterous insects of the family Calliphoridae that deposit their eggs or larvae on carrion, excrement, etc., or in wounds of living animals.

Origin of blow fly

First recorded in 1815–25 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for blow-fly

Historical Examples of blow-fly

  • The flies that troubled me most were a large kind of blue-bottle or blow-fly.

    The Malay Archipelago

    Alfred Russell Wallace

  • And then reflect upon the motor-scorcher and the earthworm and the blow-fly.

    The Vanishing Man

    R. Austin Freeman

  • One wonders what he would have made of a blow-fly buzzing on the pane.

    The Last Harvest

    John Burroughs

  • I'm a worm, a maggot, brother to the pollywog an' child of the blow-fly.

    Smoke Bellew

    Jack London

  • A blow-fly buzzed, a fan of whity steam came out of the kettle, and the lid kept up a rattling jig as the water bubbled.

    Bliss, and Other Stories

    Katherine Mansfield

Word Origin and History for blow-fly

1720, from fly (n.) + blow (v.1) in an obsolete sense "to deposit eggs, to infect with eggs," in reference to to insects, "apparently connected with old notions of natural history" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper