- The definition of a chrysalis is a hard shell spun by a caterpillar, moth or other insect in which a transformation or growth takes place.
An example of chrysalis is the cocoon a caterpillar makes to become a butterfly.
A Monarch chrysalis right before the butterfly emerges.
nounpl. chrysalides or chrysalises
- the pupa of a butterfly, the form of the insect when between the larval and adult stages and in a case or cocoon
- the case or cocoon
- a stage of development when something or someone is still protected
Origin of chrysalisClassical Latin chrysallis ; from Classical Greek golden-colored chrysalis of a butterfly ; from chrysos, gold: of Semitic origin, originally , as in Akkadian ḫurāṣu, Classical Hebrew (language) hārūz, gold, Aramaic harā, yellow
nounpl. chrys·a·lis·es or chry·sal·i·des
- a. A pupa, especially of a butterfly.b. The hardened case of a pupa.
- A protected stage of development.
Origin of chrysalisLatin chr&ymacron;sallis, from Greek khrūsallis, khrūsallid-, gold-colored pupa of a butterfly, from khrūsos, gold; see chryso–.
(plural chrysalises or chrysalides)
From Ancient Greek χρυσαλλίς (khrusallis, “golden”), because of the color of some of them.