destroying angel


: any of several very poisonous pure white amanita mushrooms (such as Amanita verna or A. virosa) : death cap

Examples of destroying angel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Deadly mushrooms in Marin The most dangerous varieties found in Marin — for both dogs and people — are the death cap (Amanita phalloides) and destroying angel (Amanita ocreata). Julia Lamont, The Mercury News, 9 Jan. 2024 Read more: Beware of deadly wild mushrooms: Portage County man survives poisoning, thanks to experimental drug at UH - In common parlance, these mushrooms are referred to as destroying angels or death cap mushrooms. Gretchen Cuda Kroen, cleveland, 2 Sep. 2023 Additionally, Amanita muscaria are often confused with relatives: deadly impostors known as the death cap and the destroying angel. Joanna Klein, New York Times, 17 Oct. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'destroying angel.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1900, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of destroying angel was circa 1900

Dictionary Entries Near destroying angel

Cite this Entry

“Destroying angel.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2024.

Medical Definition

destroying angel

de·​stroy·​ing an·​gel di-ˌstrȯi(-i)ŋ-ˈān-jəl How to pronounce destroying angel (audio)
: any of several very poisonous pure white mushrooms of the genus Amanita (as A. verna, A. virosa, or A. ocreata)
also : a death cap (A. phalloides) whether white or colored

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