• synonyms


  1. eaten into or gnawed by worms.
  2. impaired by time, decayed or antiquated.
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Origin of worm-eaten

1350–1400; Middle English wormeten; see worm, eat, -en3
Related formsun·worm-eat·en, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for worm-eaten

Historical Examples of worm-eaten

  • Dry and worm-eaten, a spark upon them became a smoulder, and a smoulder a blaze.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Fill a stewpan with large flap mushrooms, that are not worm-eaten, and the skins and fringe of such as have been pickled.

  • "The apricots have all failed, and fully one-half of the peaches are worm-eaten," said she, dryly.


    Charles James Lever

  • But to ask me to worship a stuffed purple robe on a worm-eaten throne!

  • I will take it since you offer it in kindness, old dame, this worm-eaten staff.

British Dictionary definitions for worm-eaten


  1. eaten into by wormsa worm-eaten table
  2. decayed; rotten
  3. old-fashioned; antiquated
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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