py·​roph·​o·​rus | \ pīˈräfərəs \

Definition of pyrophorus

1 plural pyrophori : any of several substances or mixtures (as a carbonized mixture of alum and sugar, or finely divided lead or iron) that ignite spontaneously on exposure to air
2 capitalized : a genus of large tropical American beetles (family Elateridae) bearing a pair of large luminous organs on the prothorax — see fire beetle

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History and Etymology for pyrophorus

New Latin, from Greek pyrophoros fire-bearing, from pyr- + -phoros -phorous

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Cite this Entry

“Pyrophorus.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Aug. 2020.

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