any of certain scarab beetles, especially the European species, Melolontha melolontha, which is very destructive to forest trees.

Origin of cockchafer

1685–95; cock1 (with reference to its size) + chafer Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cockchafer

Historical Examples of cockchafer

British Dictionary definitions for cockchafer



any of various Old World scarabaeid beetles, esp Melolontha melolontha of Europe, whose larvae feed on crops and grassesAlso called: May beetle, May bug

Word Origin for cockchafer

C18: from cock 1 + chafer
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