Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A scarabaeid beetle, especially Scarabaeus sacer, regarded as sacred by the ancient Egyptians.
  • n. A representation of this beetle, such as a ceramic or stone sculpture or a cut gem, used in ancient Egypt as a talisman and a symbol of the soul. Also called scarabaeus.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A type of beetle belonging to the family Scarabaeidae, especially the species Scarabaeus sacer, sacred to the ancient Egyptians.
  • n. A symbol, seal, amulet, or gem fashioned to resemble the sacred beetle.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any one of numerous species of lamellicorn beetles of the genus Scarabæus, or family Scarabæidæ, especially the sacred, or Egyptian, species (Scarabæus sacer, and Scarabæus Egyptiorum).
  • n. A stylized representation of a scarab beetle carved in stone or faience, or made in baked clay, usually in a conventionalized form in which the beetle has its legs held closely at its sides, and commonly having an inscription on the flat underside; -- a symbol of resurrection, used by the ancient Egyptians as an ornament or a talisman, and in modern times used in jewelry, usually by engraving the formalized scarab design on cabuchon stones. Also used attributively.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A beetle.
  • n. In entomology, a coleopterous insect of the family Scarabæidæ, and especially of the genus Scarabæus; a scarabæid or scarabæoid.
  • n. A gem, usually emerald, green feldspar, or obsidian, cut in the form of a beetle and engraved on the under face, common among the ancient Egyptians as an amulet. Also scarabæus.
  • n. A conventionalized beetle, which is a common motive in Egyptian art.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. scarabaeid beetle considered divine by ancient Egyptians

Etymologies

French scarabée, from Latin scarabaeus, from Greek karabos, crab, beetle.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French scarabée, from Latin scarabaeus ("beetle"), from Ancient Greek κάραβος (karabos, "beetle"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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