[ proh-bos-is, -kis ]
/ proʊˈbɒs ɪs, -kɪs /
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noun, plural pro·bos·cis·es, pro·bos·ci·des [proh-bos-i-deez]. /proʊˈbɒs ɪˌdiz/.

the trunk of an elephant.
any long flexible snout, as of the tapir.
Also called beak. the elongate, protruding mouth parts of certain insects, adapted for sucking or piercing.
any of various elongate feeding, defensive, or sensory organs of the oral region, as in certain leeches and worms.
Facetious. the human nose, especially when unusually long or prominent.



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Origin of proboscis

1570–80; <Latin <Greek proboskís elephant's trunk, literally, feeder, equivalent to pro-pro-2 + bósk(ein) to feed + -is (stem -id-) noun suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for proboscis

British Dictionary definitions for proboscis

/ (prəʊˈbɒsɪs) /

noun plural -cises or -cides (-sɪˌdiːz)

a long flexible prehensile trunk or snout, as of an elephant
the elongated mouthparts of certain insects, adapted for piercing or sucking food
any similar part or organ
informal, facetious a person's nose, esp if large

Word Origin for proboscis

C17: via Latin from Greek proboskis trunk of an elephant, from boskein to feed
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

Scientific definitions for proboscis

[ prō-bŏsĭs ]

Plural proboscises proboscides (prō-bŏsĭ-dēz′)

A long, flexible snout or trunk, as of an elephant.
The slender, tubular feeding and sucking organ of certain invertebrates, such as butterflies and mosquitoes.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.