Origin and Etymology of cantharis
Middle English cantaride (usually in plural) “the blister beetle Lytta vesicatoria (earlier Cantharis vesictoria), preparation made from the beetles,” borrowed from Latin cantharid-, cantharis (plural cantharidēs) “the beetle Lytta vesicatoria,” borrowed from Greek kantharís, from kántharos “the dung beetle Gymnopleurus mopsus” (of obscure origin) + -id-, -is, diminutive suffix ◆The Greek word kántharos denotes various things (beetle, cup, a kind of boat, a species of fish) the interrelations of which are far from clear; possibly several words of distinct origin have merged.
First Known Use: 14th century
Medical Definition of cantharis
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