Definition of mantis in English:

mantis

Line breaks: man¦tis
Pronunciation: /ˈmantɪs
 
/
(also praying mantis)

noun (plural same or mantises)

  • A slender predatory insect with a triangular head, which waits motionless for prey with its large forelegs folded like hands in prayer.
    • Suborder Mantodea, order Dictyoptera: Mantidae and other families, and many species, including Mantis religiosa of southern Europe
    More example sentences
    • A newcomer could easily get lost in its tunnels, and the unwary is easy prey to predatory wasps or mantises.
    • The creatures look part stick insect, part mantis, with a touch of grasshopper.
    • Some insects also hunt down spiders, including the mantis and a wasp that specializes in catching and paralyzing spiders.

Origin

mid 17th century: modern Latin, from Greek, literally 'prophet'.

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