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ichneumon Syllabification: ich·neu·mon
Pronunciation: /ikˈn(y)o͞omən/

Definition of ichneumon in English:


1 (also ichneumon wasp or ichneumon fly) A slender parasitic wasp with long antennae that deposits its eggs in, on, or near the larvae of other insects.
  • Family Ichneumonidae, order Hymenoptera: numerous genera and species
Example sentences
  • For him, the fiend that shook his faith was the ichneumon wasp, which lays its eggs inside the larvae of the horntail wasp.
  • They belong to the order Hymenoptera, which includes bees, wasps, sawflies, and ichneumons.
  • The Persians did not worship wood and stone with the Greeks, nor the ibis and ichneumon with the Egyptians.
2 another term for Egyptian mongoose.
Example sentences
  • They also are in competition for food with the swamp ichneumon, which preys on crabs.
  • There are also jackals, wolves, the ichneumon and, possibly, a polecat.


Late 15th century (sense 2): via Latin from Greek ikhneumōn 'tracker', from ikhneuein 'to track', from ikhnos 'track, footstep'.

Words that rhyme with ichneumon

crewman, crewmen, energumen, human, Newman, numen, Schumann, subhuman, Trueman
Definition of ichneumon in:
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