Word of the Day

Monday, June 16, 2014


\GAL-uh-nip-er\ , noun;
Informal. any of various insects that sting or bite, especially a large American mosquito, Psorophora ciliata.
"Deacon my calf! There's that gallinipper of a prophet. Hey, you and God trading chin music these days, or did you go and get slewed again?"
-- Vardis Fisher, Children of God, 1939
Gallinippers can grow to the size a quarter and have painful stings, which can feel "like you're being stabbed," Anthony Pelaez of Tampa's Museum of Science and Industry told Fox Orlando earlier this year.
-- Douglas Main, "Meet the Gallinappers: Huge Mosquitoes Spotted in Florida," Live Science, 2013
Gallinipper came to English in the late 1600s. Though its origins are uncertain, the second element of the word likely comes from the term nipper, which has referred to an animal that bites since the 1530s.
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