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

  • n. The egg or larva of a blowfly, usually deposited on meat.
  • transitive v. To deposit flyblows on.
  • transitive v. To contaminate; taint.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The larva of the blowfly, especially when found on rotten meat.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One of the eggs or young larvæ deposited by a flesh fly, or blowfly.
  • transitive v. To deposit eggs upon, as a flesh fly does on meat; to cause to be maggoty; hence, to taint or contaminate, as if with flyblows.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make flyblown; taint with or as if with flyblows: chiefly in figurative uses.
  • To deposit eggs on meat or the like, as a fly.
  • Of the nature of flyblow; flyblown.
  • n. The egg of a fly, the presence of which in numbers on meat, etc., makes it tainted and maggoty.


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • He led me to an unfrequented part of the house, and opened his business thus -- Worthy sir, I make it a point of conscience to give you a very serious warning. You are aware that the Marquis de Marialva had at first taken a fancy to Narcissa, my wife; he had even gone so far as to fix a day for trying the relish of my rib, when that cockatrice Estella contrived to flyblow the bill of fare, and transfer the banquet to her own untainted charms.

    - Lesage, The Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillane, tr. Smollett, bk 7 ch. 11

    October 2, 2008