[myoo r-eks]

noun, plural mu·ri·ces [myoo r-uh-seez] /ˈmyʊər əˌsiz/, mu·rex·es.

any marine gastropod of the genus Murex, common in tropical seas, certain species of which yield the royal purple dye valued by the ancients.
a shell used as a trumpet, as in representations of Tritons in art.
purplish red.

Origin of murex

1580–90; < New Latin, Latin mūrex the shellfish that yielded Tyrian purple dye Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for murex

Historical Examples of murex

British Dictionary definitions for murex


noun plural murices (ˈmjʊərɪˌsiːz)

any of various spiny-shelled marine gastropods of the genus Murex and related genera: formerly used as a source of the dye Tyrian purple

Word Origin for murex

C16: from Latin mūrex purple fish; related to Greek muax sea mussel
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 murex

kind of shellfish which yields a purple dye, 1580s, from Latin murex (plural murices) "purple fish, purple dye," probably cognate with Greek myax "sea mussel," of unknown origin, perhaps related to mys "mouse" (see muscle (n.) and mussel).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper