Etymology
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earwig (n.)

type of insect (Forficula auricularia), Old English earwicga "earwig," from eare (see ear (n.1)) + wicga "beetle, worm, insect," probably from the same Germanic source as wiggle, on the notion of "quick movement," and ultimately from PIE root *wegh- "to go, move." So called from the ancient and widespread (but false) belief that the garden pest went into people's ears. Compare French perce-oreille, German ohr-wurm. A Northern England name for it reported from 1650s is twitch-ballock.

updated on April 20, 2017

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Definitions of earwig from WordNet

earwig (n.)
any of numerous insects of the order Dermaptera having elongate bodies and slender many-jointed antennae and a pair of large pincers at the rear of the abdomen;
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.