follow Dictionary.com

Write a Super Short Story to win an iPod!

byssus

[bis-uh s] /ˈbɪs əs/
noun, plural byssuses, byssi
[bis-ahy] /ˈbɪs aɪ/ (Show IPA)
1.
Zoology. a collection of silky filaments by which certain mollusks attach themselves to rocks.
2.
an ancient cloth, thought to be of linen, cotton, or silk.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin < Greek býssos a fine cotton or linen < Semitic; compare Hebrew būts
Related forms
byssaceous
[bih-sey-shuh s] /bɪˈseɪ ʃəs/ (Show IPA),
byssoid, adjective
byssal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for byssi

byssus

/ˈbɪsəs/
noun (pl) byssuses, byssi (ˈbɪsaɪ)
1.
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 byssi

10
10
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for byssi