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Pronunciation:  'deth`wâch

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  minute wingless psocopterous insects injurious to books and papers
  2. [n]  bores through wood making a ticking sound popularly thought to presage death

DEATHWATCH is a 10 letter word that starts with D.


 Synonyms: book louse, booklouse, deathwatch beetle, Liposcelis divinatorius, Xestobium rufovillosum
 See Also: Anobiidae, beetle, common booklouse, family Anobiidae, genus Liposcelis, Liposcelis, psocopterous insect, Trogium pulsatorium



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
\Death"watch`\ (?; 224), n.
1. (Zo["o]l.)
   (a) A small beetle ({Anobium tessellatum} and other allied
       species). By forcibly striking its head against
       woodwork it makes a ticking sound, which is a call of
       the sexes to each other, but has been imagined by
       superstitious people to presage death.
   (b) A small wingless insect, of the family {Psocid[ae]},
       which makes a similar but fainter sound; -- called
       also {deathtick}.

             She is always seeing apparitions and hearing
             deathwatches.                     --Addison.

             I did not hear the dog howl, mother, or the
             deathwatch beat.                  --Tennyson.

2. The guard set over a criminal before his execution.

Thesaurus Terms
 Related Terms: agony, burial service, death agonies, death groan, death rattle, death struggle, death throes, deathbed, dirge, dying breath, eulogy, exequies, extreme unction, extremity, final extremity, funeral oration, funeral rites, last agony, last breath, last duty, last gasp, last honors, last offices, last rites, moribundity, obsequies, requiem, requiem mass, throes of death, viaticum, wake