moth definition

  • noun:
    • Any of many pests associated with the order Lepidoptera, usually distinguished from butterflies by their particular nocturnal task, hairlike or feathery antennae, stout systems, therefore the frenulum that keeps the leading and right back wings collectively.
    • A clothes moth.
    • A usually nocturnal insect of the order Lepidoptera, distinguished from butterflies by feather-like antennae.
    • The plant Vigna aconitifolia, referred to as moth bean.
    • A mote.
    • Any nocturnal lepidopterous insect, or any perhaps not included among the butterflies
    • Any lepidopterous insect that feeds upon clothes, whole grain, etc.. See these terms under clothing, Grain, etc.
    • anyone of various various other insects that obliterate woolen and fur goods, etc., esp. the larvæ of several types of beetles associated with the genera Dermestes and Anthrenus. Carpet moths in many cases are the larvæ of Anthrenus. See Carpet beetle, under Carpet, Dermestes, Anthrenus.
    • such a thing which slowly and quietly consumes, consumes, or wastes anything else.
    • A nocturnal or crepuscular lepidopterous pest; an associate associated with order Lepidoptera and suborder Heterocera.
    • Any larva that ruins woolen textiles.
    • Figuratively, a person who or that which slowly and quietly consumes, consumes, or wastes such a thing.
    • An obsolete variation of mote.
    • In India, a trailing dwarf bean, Phaseolus aconitifolius, cultivated for meals and fodder. Also called Turkish gram. See gram.
    • typically crepuscular or nocturnal pest having a stout body and feathery or hairlike antennae
  • verb:
    • To look for moths.

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