noun, plural elytra [el-i-truh] .
one of the pair of hardened forewings of certain insects, as beetles, forming a protective covering for the posterior or flight wings.
Also called wing case, wing cover.

1745–55; < Neo-Latin < Greek élytron a covering

elytrous [el-i-truhs] , adjective Unabridged

wing case

noun Entomology.
Also called wing cover.

1655–65 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
elytron or elytrum (ˈɛlɪˌtrɒn, ˈɛlɪtrəm)
n , pl -tra
either of the horny front wings of beetles and some other insects, which cover and protect the hind wings
[C18: from Greek elutron sheath, covering]
elytrum or elytrum (ˈɛlɪˌtrɒn, ˈɛlɪtrəm, -trə)
[C18: from Greek elutron sheath, covering]
'elytroid or elytrum
'elytrous or elytrum

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
elytron   (ěl'ĭ-trŏn')  Pronunciation Key 

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Plural elytra
Either of the modified forewings of a beetle or related insect that encase the thin hind wings used in flight.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
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