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cantharides

[kan-thar-i-deez] /kænˈθær ɪˌdiz/
plural noun, singular cantharis
[kan-thar-is] /kænˈθær ɪs/ (Show IPA)
1.
Spanish fly (def 1).
2.
cantharis, Spanish fly (def 2).
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin, plural of cantharis < Greek kantharís blister fly

Spanish fly

noun
1.
Also called cantharides. a preparation of powdered blister beetles, especially the Spanish fly, used medicinally as a counterirritant, diuretic, and aphrodisiac.
2.
Also, Spanishfly. Also called cantharis. a common European blister beetle, Cantharis (Lytta) vesicatoria, that yields this preparation.
Origin
1400-50; so called from the fact that the beetles are found in abundance in Spain
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for cantharides

cantharides

/kænˈθærɪˌdiːz/
plural noun (sing) cantharis (ˈkænθərɪs)
1.
a diuretic and urogenital stimulant or irritant prepared from the dried bodies of Spanish fly (family Meloidae, not Cantharidae), once thought to be an aphrodisiac Also called Spanish fly
Word Origin
C15: from Latin, plural of cantharis, from Greek kantharis Spanish fly

Spanish fly

noun
1.
a European blister beetle, Lytta vesicatoria (family Meloidae), the dried bodies of which yield the pharmaceutical product cantharides
2.
another name for cantharides
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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