Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A remarkable marine worm of the family Nereidæ, Palolo viridis, found in vast numbers in the Polynesian seas, and much used for food by the natives. It is a notobranchiate polychætous annelid, formerly placed in the genus Lysidice, or forming a genus (Palolo) by itself. It visits the Samoan, Fijian, and Gilbert archipelagos to spawn once a year, in October, at the last quarter of the moon.
- n. [capitalized] [NL.] A generic name of this worm, called Palolo viridis. Also Palola.
GNU Webster's 1913
- (Zoöl.) A polystome worm (Palolo viridis) that burrows in the coral reefs of certain of the Pacific Islands. A little before the last quarter of the moon in October and November, they swarm in vast numbers at the surface of the sea for breeding, and are gathered and highly esteemed as food by the natives. An allied species inhabits the tropical Atlantic and swarms in June or July.
“Taumafamua was the name of this month, _the first of plenty_, that means, fish and other food became plentiful, and then followed what were called the palolo and fly-hook feasts.”
“The palolo is a favourite delicacy, and they never fail to fish for it.”
“If the last quarter of the moon is early in October palolo does not come till the last quarter of the November moon.”
“If the last quarter of the moon is late in October palolo is found the day before, the day of, and the day after, that quarter.”
“The palolo is mixed with pudding, and said to taste like fish; I am not in a position to pronounce an opinion.”
“In this same place I had occasion to observe an interesting zoological phenomenon, the appearance of the palolo-worm, which occurs almost all over the Pacific once a year, at a certain date after the October full moon.”
“His head was made of a whitish clay -- _palolo_ -- which was brought from the four ends of the world by Lono.”
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