A person or substance that kills; an act of killing.
Latin ‑cidium and ‑cidere, from caedere, to strike down or slay.
One set of words refers to the killing of one human being by another, or self-killing in the case of suicide (sui, of oneself); terms here either describe the act of killing or the person who kills (so infanticide is either the killing of an infant or someone who kills an infant). Another group concerns the destruction of organisms considered undesirable, a general word for which is pesticide and common group terms insecticide, fungicide, and herbicide; terms here denote the agent that kills. Adjectives are formed in ‑cidal (fratricidal, homicidal).
Examples of words in -cide
All word origins are from Latin unless otherwise stated.
Greek baktēria, staff or cane
Greek bios, life
a disease germ
an ethnic or national group
Greek genos, race, stock, kind
weeds and grasses
homo, man, in practice gender-neutral
a baby or infant
Greek mikros, small, plus bios, life
parricidium, murder of a parent
Greek pseudēs, false
a king or other ruler
rodents, especially rats or mice
rodere, to gnaw
Greek sperma, seed
sui‑, of oneself