ichneumon definition

  • noun:
    • a big mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon) of Africa and south Europe, having a gray coat and black tail tufts. Also known as Egyptian mongoose.
    • The ichneumon fly.
    • The Egyptian mongoose, Herpestes ichneumon, within Africa and south European countries.
    • The ichneumon wasp.
    • Any carnivorous mammal of this genus Herpestes, and family members Viverridæ. Many species are found in Asia and Africa. The Egyptian species (Herpestes ichneumon), which varies to Spain and Palestine, is mentioned for destroying the eggs and younger regarding the crocodile in addition to different snakes and lizards, and hence was considered sacred because of the old Egyptians. The most popular types of Asia (Herpestes griseus), known as the mongoose, features similar practices and it is often domesticated. Its mentioned for killing the cobra.
    • Any hymenopterous insect of the family Ichneumonidæ, of which several thousand species are known, belonging to numerous genera.
    • A carnivorous mammal, some sort of mungoose (Viverra ichneumon of Linnæus, now known as Herpestes ichneumon), found in Egypt, from the subfamily Herpestinæ and family members Viverridæ.
    • [capitalized] A genus of herpestine viverrine mammals, containing the types I. pharaonis. See Herpestes.
    • In entomology:
    • [capitalized] A Linnean genus of hymenopterous insects, formerly including most of the pupivorous or parasitic hymenopters, now restricted to certain species of ichneumon-flies which are regarded as typical of the genuine Ichneumonidæ.
    • A species of the genus Ichneumon or family Ichneumonidæ; an ichneumon-fly; a cuckoo-fly.
    • northern African mongoose; in old times thought to devour crocodile eggs

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