• WordNet 3.6
    • n cicada stout-bodied insect with large membranous wings; male has drum-like organs for producing a high-pitched drone
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The loudest insect in the world is the male cicadas, which are like crickets. When they rub their abdomens, the sound made can be heard from 1300 feet
    • n Cicada sĭ*kā"dȧ (Zoöl) Any species of the genus Cicada or of the family Cicadidae. They are large hemipterous insects, with nearly transparent wings. The male makes a shrill sound by peculiar organs in the under side of the abdomen, consisting of a pair of stretched membranes, acted upon by powerful muscles. A noted American species (Cicada septendecim) is called the seventeen year locust. Another common species is the dogday cicada.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Cicadas have their hearing organs in their stomachs, at the base of the abdomen.
    • n cicada A popular name of many insects belonging to different orders, Hemiptera and Orthoptera, which make a rhythmical creaking or chirping noise; a locust, grasshopper, or cricket. In this sense the word has no definite zoölogical signification.
    • n cicada In zoology: [capitalized] The typical genus of homopterous hemipterous insects of the family Cicadidæ. They are of comparatively large size, and the males have drums under their transparent wings with which a peculiar shrilling noise is made. The adult females deposit their eggs in the twigs of trees. The adolescent life of these insects is passed underground. C. orni is the south European species; C. hematodes occurs in Germany, England, etc.; C. septendecim is the American periodical cicada or seventeen-year locust, and there are several other species in the United States.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The cicada, a fly found in Africa, spends 17 years of its life sleeping; and only two weeks is awake during which mates and then dies.
    • n Cicada si-kā′da an insect remarkable for its chirping sound.
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. cicada.


In literature:

Only in the trees is heard at intervals the whir of the cicada.
"The Western World" by W.H.G. Kingston
The trees were fully green, and luscious fruits weighed down their branches, while over all was the drowsy hum of the cicada.
"Edmund Dulac’s Fairy-Book" by Edmund Dulac
Cicadas are supreme in longevity and noise.
"Edge of the Jungle" by William Beebe
In the summer the woods are full of locusts (cicadae), which jar the air with their harsh note.
"Peeps At Many Lands: Australia" by Frank Fox
The songs of the cicadas are noted all over the world.
"The Log of the Sun" by William Beebe
Cicada droned in long, loud crescendo and diminuendo under the hot sun of mid forenoon.
"Judith of the Cumberlands" by Alice MacGowan
A thin, keen humming began in my head, like the cicadas on a hillside in September.
"Black Spirits and White" by Ralph Adams Cram
The heat of the jungle was intense, and we suffered severely from the stings of a fly that is not unlike a cicada in shape.
"Tales of the Malayan Coast" by Rounsevelle Wildman
It is a specimen of game which I have just introduced, a Cicada, a luscious morsel.
"The Glow-Worm and Other Beetles" by Jean Henri Fabre
The whirring chorus of the cicadas drummed an elfin requiem.
"Rimrock Trail" by J. Allan Dunn
The creature most commonly called a locust is a cicada, or harvest fly.
"The Meaning of Evolution" by Samuel Christian Schmucker
The cicada fills the air with its monotonous and melancholy notes.
"Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIII No. 4 October 1848" by Various
The air was still, and he could hear cicadas in the trees and shrubs.
"The Flying Stingaree" by Harold Leland Goodwin
Yet perhaps with sunflowers and cicadae, summer and winter, cattle, wife and family, the settler may create a full and various existence.
"The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition" by Robert Louis Stevenson
The wash of the water at the foot of the cliff, the chirp of the cicadas, were the only sounds to be heard.
"Under False Pretences" by Adeline Sergeant
Cicadas are also noteworthy for their longevity, which so far as is known surpasses that of all other insects.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 3" by Various
Left alone, the tongues of the excited boys became loosened, and ran like the vibrations of a cicada's rattle.
"Si Klegg, Book 6 (of 6) Si And Shorty, With Their Boy Recruits, Enter On The Atlanta Campaign" by John McElroy
In the distance, the plashing of a fountain could be heard, and the cicadas chirped in the myrtles.
"A Struggle for Rome, v. 1" by Felix Dahn
The cicadas are calling; the Brook of Kidron babbles on monotonously; the doleful chant of a night watchman is heard in the city.
"Sulamith: A Romance of Antiquity" by Alexandre Kuprin
Even the cicadas had hushed their shrill note.
"Into the Primitive" by Robert Ames Bennet

In poetry:

the cicada's cry
drills into the rocks.
"Stillness" by Matsuo Basho
Only the lonely creaking hum
Of the cicada's song;
And a broken fence where tall weeds come
With spikëd fingers strong.
"Blue Succory In War Time" by Annie Adams Fields
Green Cicadas, Black cicadas,
happy in the gracious weather
Floury-bakers, double-drummers
all as one and all together—-
how they voice the bygone summers!
"The Song Of The Cicadas" by Roderic Quinn
All was lost, then! No! a cricket
(What "cicada"? Pooh!)
--Some mad thing that left its thicket
For mere love of music--flew With its little heart on fire,
Lighted on the crippled lyre.
"A Tale" by Robert Browning
The stars were bright, the breeze was still,
The cicada and the whippoorwill,
Alone disturbed the scene;
A streamlet down the dark ravine,
Hasted the gloomy spot to shun,
And bear its little tribute to Cub Run.
"The Red Zouave" by Anonymous Americas
One light cicada's simmering cry,
Survivor of the summer heat,
Chimes faint; the robin, shrill and sweet,
Pipes from green holly; whilst from far
The rookery croaks reply,
Hoarse, deep, as veterans readying for war.
"A Dorset Idyl" by Francis Turner Palgrave

In news:

Fresh Cicadas Served Here: DC resident Jacques Tiziou has a taste for cicadas .
He is offering refuge from periodical cicadas in the hotels of Ocean City, where he hopes you will plunk down a few bucks on mini-golf.
Don't I see and hear cicadas every year.
The annual cicadas usually come out in late summer.
And northern Georgia will also host cicadas .
Male and female cicadas have small claws on their legs that can pinch.
No matter what you call them— cicada killer s or sand hornets—the two-inch wasps look pretty scary.
Anna Kerns brought a deceased cicada killer into the Observer office Monday with the intent of warning other residents to be on the lookout—particularly children running barefoot through the grass.
Maxwell DeMille 's Cicada Club.
OK, so that's a little harsh, but I can't stand those darn cicadas.
The 17-year cicadas are about to emerge in force.
The "nymphs," as the newly hatched cicadas are called, are 1/10th of an inch long and drift down to the ground, where they quickly crawl 10 inches under the soil.
Last appearing in 1998, Brood XIX of periodical cicada will pupate into adulthood and make their way above ground this spring.
Brood XIX is a 13-year cicada grouping that stretches from Missouri to Illinois and south into northern Louisiana then east to North Carolina.
Scary-looking cicada killers are primarily interested in their prey.

In science:

Paul Glendinning† School of Mathematics and Centre for Interdisciplinary Computational and Dynamical Analysis (CICADA), University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, U.K.
Emergence of hierarchical networks and polysynchronous behaviour in simple adaptive systems