pest

noun
\ ˈpest How to pronounce pest (audio) \

Definition of pest

1 : an epidemic disease associated with high mortality specifically : plague
2 : something resembling a pest in destructiveness especially : a plant or animal detrimental to humans or human concerns (such as agriculture or livestock production)
3 : one that pesters or annoys : nuisance

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Other Words from pest

pesty \ ˈpe-​stē How to pronounce pesty (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for pest

Synonyms

pestilence, plague

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Examples of pest in a Sentence

These insects are pests for farmers. mice and other household pests You're being a real pest. Would you leave us alone, please?
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Recent Examples on the Web

In fact, beekeeper error isn't the only common cause of death—pests, especially certain kinds of mice, can also wreak havoc on your hives. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "Beekeeping for Beginners: Everything to Know About Starting Your Own Colony," 5 Apr. 2019 The Norway rat, a common pest in the U.S. Photo: iStock City council members dashed to pass a motion Friday to explore ways of removing the rodents from the seat of government of America’s second largest city. Ian Lovett, WSJ, "Politics Is a Dirty Business—Starting with the Rats at Los Angeles City Hall," 10 Feb. 2019 And talk to your local county extension agent for advice on soil, local plant pests, and general knowledge on crops. Robin Tribble, Popular Mechanics, "How to Grow a Giant Pumpkin," 24 Jan. 2019 To keep leaf miners and other pests away, simply place row covers over your beets during the insects' busiest time between May and late June. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "How to Grow Beets This Fall for a Hearty Autumn Harvest," 21 Aug. 2018 Mosquitoes, the itching and biting pests of summer, want their next meal to be you. Elizabeth Myong, Houston Chronicle, "Tips on avoiding mosquitoes this summer," 20 June 2018 To decrease your pet’s chances of being pestered by ticks and other pests, treat your lawn and the other outdoor areas where your pets spend time. Kelli Bender, PEOPLE.com, "How to Protect Your Pet From 2018's Dangerous Tick Season," 7 June 2018 However, it is considered to be an invasive plant pest in certain parts of the country, such as Oregon and Washington, and should never be planted there. Tim Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "What's the actual difference between a weed and a flower?," 25 May 2018 Other experts inspected tree parts and found that none had rot, defects, disease or pest infestation. Kimberly Veklerov, San Francisco Chronicle, "Cal Fire releases details of probe into cause of Wine Country fires," 9 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pest.' 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 pest

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pest

Middle French peste, from Latin pestis

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Statistics for pest

Last Updated

20 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for pest

The first known use of pest was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for pest

pest

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pest

: an animal or insect that causes problems for people especially by damaging crops
informal : a person who bothers or annoys other people

pest

noun
\ ˈpest How to pronounce pest (audio) \

Kids Definition of pest

1 : nuisance … Kirsti was such a pest, always butting in.— Lois Lowry, Number the Stars
2 : a plant or animal that is harmful to humans or property

pest

noun
\ ˈpest How to pronounce pest (audio) \

Medical Definition of pest

1 : an epidemic disease associated with high mortality specifically : plague sense 2
2 : something resembling a pest in destructiveness especially : a plant or animal detrimental to humans or human concerns

Other Words from pest

pesty \ ˈpes-​tē How to pronounce pesty (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on pest

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pest

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pest

Spanish Central: Translation of pest

Nglish: Translation of pest for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pest for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pest

Comments on pest

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