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[mag-uh t] /ˈmæg ət/
a soft-bodied, legless larva of certain flies.
Archaic. an odd fancy; whim.
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English magot, magat, unexplained variant of maddock, Middle English mathek < Old Norse mathkr; akin to Danish maddik maggot, Old English matha, mathu grub, maggot, Old High German mado maggot Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for maggots
  • Chicken coops writhe with maggots, a sickening stench hanging in the air.
  • To think so, is to be of the same mentality that thought maggots magically appeared in meat.
  • Empty fly pupa were found with the kids' remains, indicating that maggots ate their flesh during natural decomposition.
  • They become food for squirrels, or cats, or maggots.
  • When you die and begin to rot, maggots appear and aid in the process.
  • Many maggots go to the core and remain there until they mature.
  • These maggots then concentrate the toxin, and the toxic maggots are ingested by birds.
  • Fly maggots of the fruit fly group are well known as plant feeders and some are serious agricultural pests.
  • The maggots eat the flesh of the fruit, causing it to rot.
  • Small white maggots that feed in the lower part of the stem or bulb may injure onion plants.
British Dictionary definitions for maggots


the soft limbless larva of dipterous insects, esp the housefly and blowfly, occurring in decaying organic matter
(rare) a fancy or whim
Word Origin
C14: from earlier mathek; related to Old Norse mathkr worm, Old English matha, Old High German mado grub
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
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Word Origin and History for maggots



late 15c., probably an unexplained variant of Middle English maðek, from Old English maða "maggot, grub," from Proto-Germanic *mathon (cf. Old Norse maðkr, Old Saxon matho, Middle Dutch, Dutch made, Old High German mado, German Made, Gothic maþa "maggot"). Figurative use "whim, fancy, crotchet" is 1620s, from the notion of a maggot in the brain.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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maggots in Medicine

maggot mag·got (māg'ət)
The legless, soft-bodied, wormlike larva of any of various flies of the order Diptera, often found in decaying matter.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Slang definitions & phrases for maggots



A white person; ofay: Maggot: street slang for anyone white (1980s+ Black)

Related Terms

enough to gag a maggot

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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