Definition of locust in English:

locust

Line breaks: lo¦cust
Pronunciation: /ˈləʊkəst
 
/

noun

  • 1A large, mainly tropical grasshopper with strong powers of flight. It is usually solitary, but from time to time there is a population explosion and it migrates in vast swarms which cause extensive damage to vegetation.
    • Several species in the family Acrididae, including the migratory locust (Locusta migratoria)
    More example sentences
    • Vast swarms of locusts have swept over South Sulawesi in the past few days, destroying rice and secondary crops.
    • Swarms of locusts damaged crops and pastures across the state during the autumn.
    • Insects such as the red locust, crickets, grasshoppers, and flying ants are collected in season and either fried with salt to make popular snacks or dried for later use.
  • 1.1 (also seventeen-year locust) US The periodical cicada.
    More example sentences
    • We get confused because both cicadas and locust emerge periodically.
    • These are known as periodical cicadas but are also commonly called 17-year cicadas, 13-year cicadas, or locusts.
  • 2 (also locust bean) The large edible pod of some plants of the pea family, in particular the carob bean, which is said to resemble a locust.
    More example sentences
    • Others, like gum guar (obtained from the cluster bean), or locust bean gum (from the locust bean), come from seedpods.
    • I learn that one ice cream ingredient, locust bean gum, was used in ancient Egypt to seal the wrappings on mummies.
    • In cream cheese, xanthan gum interacts synergistically with guar and locust bean gum, notes Sebree.
  • 3 (also locust tree) A carob tree, false acacia, or similar pod-bearing tree of the pea family.
    More example sentences
    • We look up at the sky through a fringe of leaves belonging to a locust tree or a mimosa, the rows of lacy leaves forming a mantilla overhead.
    • Kaya and I were taking a walk to the pond this morning when along the roadside I noticed a locust tree that still had some long felty pods hanging from it.
    • Except for the existing locust tree, the two sides of the yard are symmetrical.

Origin

Middle English: via Old French locuste from Latin locusta 'locust, crustacean'.

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