One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An invertebrate or plant which has a symbiotic relationship with ants, such as being tended and protected by ants or living inside an ants' nest.
- ‘The principal collections are those of ants, termites and myrmecophiles, of grasshoppers and crickets and of butterflies.’
- ‘Some ant nests are inhabited by myrmecophiles.’
- ‘In particular, he was interested in those other inhabitants of ant nests referred to as myrmecophiles.’
- ‘For instance, guests of ants are called myrmecophiles, which means ant loving.’
- ‘Regularly, part of these myrmecophiles stay behind when they miss an emigration of their host colony.’
Late 19th century: from Greek murmēx, murmēk- ‘ant’ + -phile.
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