What do a.m. and p.m. stand for?


[bis-uh s] /ˈbɪs əs/
noun, plural byssuses, byssi
[bis-ahy] /ˈbɪs aɪ/ (Show IPA)
Zoology. a collection of silky filaments by which certain mollusks attach themselves to rocks.
an ancient cloth, thought to be of linen, cotton, or silk.
Origin of byssus
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin < Greek býssos a fine cotton or linen < Semitic; compare Hebrew būts
Related forms
[bih-sey-shuh s] /bɪˈseɪ ʃəs/ (Show IPA),
byssoid, adjective
byssal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for byssus
  • They use little sticky threads call a byssus, or byssal threads to attach to things.
  • As the clam increases in size the byssus disappears.
  • They attach to surfaces using a specialized organ called a byssus.
British Dictionary definitions for byssus


noun (pl) byssuses, byssi (ˈbɪsaɪ)
a mass of strong threads secreted by a sea mussel or similar mollusc that attaches the animal to a hard fixed surface
Word Origin
C17: from Latin, from Greek bussos linen, flax, ultimately of Egyptian origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for byssus

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for byssus

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for byssus