praying mantis love

Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A green or brownish predatory insect (Mantis religiosa) that while at rest folds its front legs as if in prayer.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of various predatory, cannibalistic insects of the family Mantidae that have a prayer-like stance.
  • n. A mantid of the species Mantis religiosa.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A praying-insect. See cut under Mantis.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the common mantis

Etymologies

Mantis from Greek μάντις. Named "praying mantis" for their stance, whith "hands" held together, resembling a person praying. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • One of Ogden Nash's finest:

    From whence arrived the praying mantis?
    From outer space, or lost Atlantis?
    I glimpse the grin, green metal mug
    That masks the pseudo-saintly bug,
    Orthopterous, also carnivorous,
    And faintly whisper, Lord deliver us.

    August 16, 2008

  • Citation at kukla.

    August 16, 2008

  • The insect order Mantodea or mantises consists of approximatively 2,300 species worldwide in temperate and tropical habitats.

    The term "mantises" (or the more colloquial "praying mantises") should be used when referring to the entire order. Often mistakenly spelled preying mantis (an eggcorn, since they are notoriously predatory), they are in fact named for the typical "prayer-like" stance. The word mantis derives from the Greek word mantis for prophet or fortune teller. In Europe, the name "praying mantis" refers to only a single species, Mantis religiosa.

    _Wikipedia

    February 4, 2008