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Alternative forms[edit]


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Etymology 1[edit]

red +‎ back


redback (plural redbacks)

  1. (Australia) A venomous spider, Latrodectus hasselti, endemic to Australia.
    • 1988 June 16, Stephanie Pain, Things that go plop in the night, New Scientist, page 78,
      “If you find a redback, squash it firmly,” advised one guide.
    • 1996, James Lambert, The Macquarie Book of Slang, Sydney: Macquarie Library, page 254:
      Many a red-back, funnel-web, or other spider has found its resting days at the bottom of a vegemite jar shoved into some dark recess of the laundry.
    • 2005 October, Martha Harrison, Brilliant 10: Marydianne Andrade, Popular Science, page 58,
      Andrade first encountered the redback— whose lethal bite gives it as infamous a reputation in Australia as the black widow enjoys here in North America—when her grad-school adviser asked to travel to go to Perth to study them.
    • 2007, Steve Backshall, Steve Backshall's Venom: Poisonous Animals in the Natural World, page 114,
      Easily identified by a red, orange or brownish stripe on the abdomen, Redbacks are responsible for by far the most spider bites in Australia.
    • 2012, Peter Macinnis, Australian Backyard Naturalist, page 55,
      The only truly dangerous Australian spiders are funnelwebs and redbacks but, these days, deaths of people from these spiders seem to be a thing of the past since antivenom is now available.
  2. (US) A brown and white sandpiper, Calidris alpina, native to the Northern Hemisphere; the dunlin.
See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Modelled after greenback, the currency of the United States of America, except using Communist Red


redback (plural redbacks)

  1. (slang) the yuan (CNY), the currency of the People's Republic of China (Red Chinese money)
Coordinate terms[edit]