earth·​worm | \ˈərth-ˌwərm \

Definition of earthworm 

: a terrestrial annelid worm (class Oligochaeta) especially : any of a family (Lumbricidae) of numerous widely distributed hermaphroditic worms that move through the soil by means of setae and feed on decaying organic matter

Examples of earthworm in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In a 2012 video, below, the children can be heard giggling as Jen hands Jeremiah an earthworm. Glamour, "Broken Harts, Episode 2: 'If Not Us, Who?'," 11 Dec. 2018 The nuns feed organic earthworms to the amphibians and use a nearby well to change their water regularly. National Geographic, "Nuns Resurrect Endangered Salamanders in First-of-its-Kind Conservation Effort," 19 June 2018 An earthworm poked up its head, then retreated—a Hulu subscriber, no doubt. Michael Schulman, The New Yorker, "Aunt Lydia’s Garden Karma," 18 June 2018 Margie Stuchlak of Dyer watched closely as her daughter Ella, 5 1/2, focused on a wiggling earthworm under a microscope. Sue Ellen Ross, Post-Tribune, "Challenger Learning Center opens doors for kids to explore to the cosmos," 25 May 2018 In Davie a few of the Rolling Hills sets were turned into kindling and the first floor of the motel where production offices were set up had been flooded, leaving a plague of earthworms wriggling in the carpets. Chris Nashawaty,, "Inside the Caddyshack Scene That Squashed the Bill Murray-Chevy Chase Beef," 17 Apr. 2018 Even important creatures like earthworms are being damaged by neonics, a four-year investigation by the task force found. National Geographic, "Why Europe's Insecticide Ban Is Big News for Bees," 27 Apr. 2018 Though there's little known about the effect on plants or on the wider food chain, studies have shown that earthworms exposed to microplastics in soil have increased gut inflammation, slower growth and higher mortality. Mark Tutton, CNN, "It's not just the oceans: Microplastic pollution is all around us," 22 Apr. 2018 Soil contains beneficial microorganisms, insects and earthworms. Guest Columnist/,, "Earth Day is Every Day: Laurel Hopwood (Opinion)," 8 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'earthworm.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of earthworm

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for earthworm

Last Updated

15 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for earthworm

The first known use of earthworm was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for earthworm



English Language Learners Definition of earthworm

: a long worm that lives in damp soil


earth·​worm | \ˈərth-ˌwərm \

Kids Definition of earthworm

: a worm that has a long body made up of similar segments and lives in damp soil

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More from Merriam-Webster on earthworm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with earthworm

Spanish Central: Translation of earthworm

Nglish: Translation of earthworm for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about earthworm

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having a pattern of small flowers

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