The word origin of a cephalopod mollusk with ten tentacles


by the Editors


Ernst Haeckel

Chiroteuthis veranyi (Long-armed squid) as seen from below. Illustration by Ernst Haeckel, 1904.  

Squid [skwid]: noun, an elongated fast-swimming cephalopod mollusk, typically able to change color. Squid is of unknown origin.

The earliest known occurrence of the word squid is in 1613, found in Purchas his Pilgrimage or, Relations of the World and the Religions Observed in All Ages and Places Discovered, from the Creation unto this Present, by Samuel Purchas, travel writer.