follow Dictionary.com

Today's Word of the Day means...

worm

[wurm] /wɜrm/
noun
1.
Zoology. any of numerous long, slender, soft-bodied, legless, bilaterally symmetrical invertebrates, including the flatworms, roundworms, acanthocephalans, nemerteans, gordiaceans, and annelids.
2.
(loosely) any of numerous small creeping animals with more or less slender, elongated bodies, and without limbs or with very short ones, including individuals of widely differing kinds, as earthworms, tapeworms, insect larvae, and adult forms of some insects.
3.
something resembling or suggesting a worm in appearance, movement, etc.
4.
Informal. a groveling, abject, or contemptible person.
5.
the spiral pipe in which the vapor is condensed in a still.
6.
(not in technical use) screw thread (def 1).
8.
a rotating cylinder or shaft, cut with one or more helical threads, that engages with and drives a worm wheel.
9.
something that penetrates, injures, or consumes slowly or insidiously, like a gnawing worm.
10.
worms, (used with a singular verb) Pathology, Veterinary Pathology. any disease or disorder arising from the presence of parasitic worms in the intestines or other tissues; helminthiasis.
11.
(used with a plural verb) Metallurgy. irregularities visible on the surfaces of some metals subject to plastic deformation.
12.
the lytta of a dog or other carnivorous animal.
13.
computer code planted illegally in a software program so as to destroy data in any system that downloads the program, as by reformatting the hard disk.
verb (used without object)
14.
to move or act like a worm; creep, crawl, or advance slowly or stealthily.
15.
to achieve something by insidious procedure (usually followed by into):
to worm into another's favor.
16.
Metallurgy, craze (def 8a).
verb (used with object)
17.
to cause to move or advance in a devious or stealthy manner:
The thief wormed his hand into my coat pocket.
18.
to get by persistent, insidious efforts (usually followed by out or from):
to worm a secret out of a person.
19.
to insinuate (oneself or one's way) into another's favor, confidence, etc.:
to worm his way into the king's favor.
20.
to free from worms:
He wormed the puppies.
21.
Nautical. to wind yarn or the like spirally round (a rope) so as to fill the spaces between the strands and render the surface smooth.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English (noun); Old English wyrm, dragon, serpent, worm; cognate with Dutch worm, German Wurm, Old Norse ormr; akin to Latin vermis
Related forms
wormer, noun
wormlike, wormish, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for worm into

worm

/wɜːm/
noun
1.
any of various invertebrates, esp the annelids (earthworms, etc), nematodes (roundworms), and flatworms, having a slender elongated body related adjective vermicular
2.
any of various insect larvae having an elongated body, such as the silkworm and wireworm
3.
any of various unrelated animals that resemble annelids, nematodes, etc, such as the glow-worm and shipworm
4.
a gnawing or insinuating force or agent that torments or slowly eats away
5.
a wretched or spineless person
6.
anything that resembles a worm in appearance or movement
7.
a shaft on which a helical groove has been cut, as in a gear arrangement in which such a shaft meshes with a toothed wheel
8.
a spiral pipe cooled by air or flowing water, used as a condenser in a still
9.
a nontechnical name for lytta
10.
(anatomy) any wormlike organ, structure, or part, such as the middle lobe of the cerebellum (vermis cerebelli) Technical name vermis
11.
(computing) a program that duplicates itself many times in a network and prevents its destruction. It often carries a logic bomb or virus
verb
12.
to move, act, or cause to move or act with the slow sinuous movement of a worm
13.
foll by in, into, out of, etc. to make (one's way) slowly and stealthily; insinuate (oneself)
14.
(transitive; often foll by out of or from) to extract (information, a secret, etc) from by persistent questioning
15.
(transitive) to free from or purge of worms
16.
(transitive) (nautical) to wind yarn around (a rope) so as to fill the spaces between the strands and render the surface smooth for parcelling and serving
See also worms
Derived Forms
wormer, noun
wormlike, wormish, adjective
Word Origin
Old English wyrm; related to Old Frisian wirm, Old High German wurm, Old Norse ormr, Gothic waurms, Latin vermis, Greek romos woodworm

WORM

/wɜːm/
noun acronym (computing)
1.
write once read many times: an optical disk that enables users to store data but not change it
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 Origin and History for worm into
worm
O.E. wurm, variant of wyrm "serpent, dragon," also in later O.E. "earthworm," from P.Gmc. *wurmiz (cf. O.S., O.H.G., Ger. wurm, O.Fris., Du. worm, O.N. ormr, Goth. waurms "serpent, worm"), from PIE *wrmi-/*wrmo- "worm" (cf. Gk. rhomos, L. vermis "worm," O.Rus. vermie "insects," Lith. varmas "insect, gnat"), possibly from base *wer- "turn" (see versus). The ancient category of these was much more extensive than the modern, scientific, one and included serpents, scorpions, maggots, and the supposed causes of certain diseases. In Eng., the -o- was a scribal substitution to avoid confusion of -u- and -r- (as also in some, come, monk etc.). As an insult meaning "abject, miserable person" it dates from O.E. The verb meaning "to move like a worm" is recorded from 1610, in fig. senses (attested from 1627) suggesting patient, sinuous progress.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
worm into in Medicine

worm (wûrm)
n.

  1. Any of various invertebrates, as those of the phyla Annelida, Nematoda, Nemertea, or Platyhelminthes, having a long, flexible, rounded or flattened body, often without obvious appendages.

  2. Any of various crawling insect larvae, such as a grub or a caterpillar, having a soft, elongated body.

  3. Any of various unrelated animals, such as the shipworm or the slowworm, resembling a worm in habit or appearance.

  4. worms Infestation of the intestines or other parts of the body with worms or wormlike parasites; helminthiasis.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
worm into in Science
worm
  (wûrm)   
  1. Any of various invertebrate animals having a soft, long body that is round or flattened and usually lacks limbs. The term worm is used variously to refer to the segmented worms (or annelids, such as the earthworm), roundworms (or nematodes), flatworms (or platyhelminths), and various other groups.

  2. A destructive computer program that copies itself over and over until it fills all of the storage space on a computer's hard drive or on a network.


Our Living Language  : Earthworms are one of many types of worms, including those of the flat and round species. Over a century ago, Charles Darwin spent 39 years studying earthworms and wrote The Formation of Vegetable Mould Through the Action of Worms with Observations on Their Habits, an entire book that described his research on earthworm behavior and intelligence and further explained how important earthworms are to agriculture. "Long before [the plow] existed," he wrote, "the land was, in fact, regularly plowed and still continues to be thus plowed by earthworms. It may be doubted whether there are many other animals which have played so important a part in the history of the world." Darwin was referring to the way that earthworms naturally mix and till soil, while both improving its structure and increasing its nutrients. As they tunnel in the soil, earthworms open channels that allow in air and water, improving drainage and easing the way for plants to send down roots; they also carry nutrients from deep soils to the surface. Earthworms eat plant material in the soil, decaying leaves, and leaf litter, and their own waste provides nourishment for plants and other organisms. Slime, a secretion of earthworms, contains nitrogen, an important plant nutrient. It is estimated that each year earthworms in one acre of land move 18 or more tons of soil.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for worm into

worm

noun
  1. A despicable person; bastard, jerk: Cut that out, you little worm (fr 800s)
  2. (also tapeworm) A program that copies itself from one computer to another in a network, does not destroy data, but can clutter up a system: which is now classified as a ''worm'' because the writer of the program did not mean to do damage/ A worm, in computerese, is one of the many varieties of viruses that infect computers (late 1980s+ Computer)
Related Terms

can of worms


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Related Abbreviations for worm into

WORM

write once, read many [times]
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
worm into in the Bible

(1.) Heb. sas (Isa. 51:8), denotes the caterpillar of the clothes-moth. (2.) The manna bred worms (tola'im), but on the Sabbath there was not any worm (rimmah) therein (Ex. 16:20, 24). Here these words refer to caterpillars or larvae, which feed on corrupting matter. These two Hebrew words appear to be interchangeable (Job 25:6; Isa. 14:11). Tola'im in some places denotes the caterpillar (Deut. 28:39; Jonah 4:7), and rimmah, the larvae, as bred from putridity (Job 17:14; 21:26; 24:20). In Micah 7:17, where it is said, "They shall move out of their holes like worms," perhaps serpents or "creeping things," or as in the Revised Version, "crawling things," are meant. The word is used figuratively in Job 25:6; Ps. 22:6; Isa. 41:14; Mark 9:44, 46, 48; Isa. 66:24.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with worm into
Insinuate oneself subtly or gradually, as in He tried to worm into her confidence. This idiom alludes to the sinuous path of a worm. [ Early 1600s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for worm

All English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for worm

9
10
Scrabble Words With Friends