larva

[ lahr-vuh ]
/ ˈlɑr və /
|

noun, plural lar·vae [lahr-vee] /ˈlɑr vi/.

Entomology. the immature, wingless, feeding stage of an insect that undergoes complete metamorphosis.
any animal in an analogous immature form.
the young of any invertebrate animal.
larvae, Roman Antiquity. malignant ghosts, as lemures.

RELATED WORDS


Nearby words

  1. larsa,
  2. larsen ice shelf,
  3. lartigue,
  4. lartigue, jacques henri,
  5. larum,
  6. larva currens,
  7. larva migrans,
  8. larvae,
  9. larval,
  10. larval therapy

Origin of larva

1645–55; < New Latin; special use of Latin larva a ghost, specter, mask, skeleton; akin to Lares

Can be confusedlarva lava

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

Examples from the Web for larvae


British Dictionary definitions for larvae

larva

/ (ˈlɑːvə) /

noun plural -vae (-viː)

an immature free-living form of many animals that develops into a different adult form by metamorphosis
Derived Formslarval, adjective

Word Origin for larva

C18: (C17 in the original Latin sense: ghost): New Latin

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

Medicine definitions for larvae

larva

[ lärvə ]

n. pl. lar•vas

The newly hatched, wingless, often wormlike form of many insects before metamorphosis.
The newly hatched, earliest stage of any of various animals that undergo metamorphosis, differing markedly in form and appearance from the adult.
Related formslarval adj.


The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for larvae

larva

[ lärvə ]

Plural larvae (lär) larvas

An animal in an early stage of development that differs greatly in appearance from its adult stage. Larvae are adapted to a different environment and way of life from those of adults and go through a process of metamorphosis in changing to adults. Tadpoles are the larvae of frogs and toads.
The immature, wingless, and usually wormlike feeding form of those insects that undergo three stages of metamorphosis, such as butterflies, moths, and beetles. Insect larvae hatch from eggs, later turn into pupae, and finally turn into adults. Compare imago nymph pupa.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.