- The definition of a parasite is a person or organism that takes from or exploits others, giving nothing in return.
- An example of a parasite is tapeworm or ringworm.
- An example of a parasite is a person you know who is continually borrowing money and asking things of you without giving anything back.
parasite definition by Webster's New World
- a person, as in ancient Greece, who flattered and amused the host in return for free meals
- a person who lives at the expense of another or others without making any useful contribution or return; hanger-on
- Biol. a plant or animal that lives on or in an organism of another species from which it derives sustenance or protection without benefit to, and usually with harmful effects on, the host
Origin: Classical Latin parasitus ; from Classical Greek parasitos, one who eats at the table of another, parasite, toady ; from para-, beside (see para-) plush sitos, food, grain
parasite definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- Biology An organism that grows, feeds, and is sheltered on or in a different organism while contributing nothing to the survival of its host.
- a. One who habitually takes advantage of the generosity of others without making any useful return.b. One who lives off and flatters the rich; a sycophant.
- A professional dinner guest, especially in ancient Greece.
Origin: Latin parasītus, a person who lives by amusing the rich, from Greek parasītos, person who eats at someone else's table, parasite : para-, beside; see para-1 + sītos, grain, food.
parasite - Computer Definition
Unsolicited software that is installed in a computer without users realizing it. There are many different types. Parasites can report Web browsing habits to a marketing company over the Internet (see spyware) or change browser settings to point to a specific site. They can redirect search engine results to a site that sells a related product, and they can cause premium services to be dialed up. Read the License Agreement Parasites are often installed with freeware, and the license agreement may actually say so, but hardly anyone reads it. Sometimes, users can opt out of installing the parasite and install only what they wanted in the first place. Be sure security settings are set to medium at least, and never click "Yes" to any dialog that asks "do you want to run" or "execute" something unless you know what that something is. ActiveX controls on the Web cannot only install parasites but viruses as well. Parasites often do not include an uninstall function and may not be easily removed, although anti-parasite programs can detect and remove them (see spyware blocker).
parasite - Cultural Definition
An organism that lives off or in another organism, obtaining nourishment and protection while offering no benefit in return. Human parasites are often harmful to the body and can cause diseases, such as trichinosis.
- The term parasite is often applied to a person who takes advantage of other people and fails to offer anything in return.
parasite - Medical Definition
- An organism that grows, feeds, and is sheltered on or in a different organism while contributing nothing to the survival of its host.
- In conjoined twins, the usually incomplete twin that derives its support from the more nearly normal fetus.
parasite - Science Definition