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cockroach

[kok-rohch] /ˈkɒkˌroʊtʃ/
noun
1.
any of numerous orthopterous insects of the family Blattidae, characterized by a flattened body, rapid movements, and nocturnal habits and including several common household pests.
Also called roach.
Origin
1615-1625
1615-25; < Spanish cucaracha, of uncertain origin, assimilated by folk etymology to cock1, roach2
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for cockroaches

cockroach

/ˈkɒkˌrəʊtʃ/
noun
1.
any insect of the suborder Blattodea (or Blattaria), such as Blatta orientalis (oriental cockroach or black beetle): order Dictyoptera. They have an oval flattened body with long antennae and biting mouthparts and are common household pests See also German cockroach, mantis
Word Origin
C17: from Spanish cucaracha, of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for cockroaches

cockroach

n.

1620s, folk etymology (as if from cock + roach) of Spanish cucaracha "chafer, beetle," from cuca "kind of caterpillar." Folk etymology also holds that the first element is from caca "excrement."

A certaine India Bug, called by the Spaniards a Cacarootch, the which creeping into Chests they eat and defile with their ill-sented dung [Capt. John Smith, "Virginia," 1624].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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