ant

[ant]
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noun

any of numerous black, red, brown, or yellow social insects of the family Formicidae, of worldwide distribution especially in warm climates, having a large head with inner jaws for chewing and outer jaws for carrying and digging, and living in highly organized colonies containing wingless female workers, a winged queen, and, during breeding seasons, winged males, some species being noted for engaging in warfare, slavemaking, or the cultivation of food sources.

Nearby words

  1. answerable,
  2. answerback,
  3. answering machine,
  4. answering pennant,
  5. answering service,
  6. ant bear,
  7. ant bird,
  8. ant cow,
  9. ant egg,
  10. ant hill

Idioms

    have ants in one's pants, Slang. to be impatient or eager to act or speak.

Origin of ant

before 1000; Middle English am(e)te, em(e)te, Old English ǣmette; cognate with Middle Low German āmete, ēm(e)te, Middle Dutch amete, Old High German āmeiza (ā- a-3 + meizan to beat, cut, cognate with Albanian mih (he) digs), German Ameise. See emmet, mite1

Related formsant·like, adjective

Can be confusedant aunt

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for have ants in one's pants

ant

noun

any small social insect of the widely distributed hymenopterous family Formicidae, typically living in highly organized colonies of winged males, wingless sterile females (workers), and fertile females (queens), which are winged until after matingSee also army ant, fire ant, slave ant, wood ant Related adjective: formic
white ant another name for a termite
have ants in one's pants slang to be restless or impatient

Word Origin for ant

Old English ǣmette; related to Old High German āmeiza, Old Norse meita; see emmet

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 have ants in one's pants

ant

n.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper