The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Venus \Ve"nus\ (v[=e]"n[u^]s), n. [L. Venus, -eris, the goddess
of love, the planet Venus.]
1. (Class. Myth.) The goddess of beauty and love, that is,
beauty or love deified.
2. (Anat.) One of the planets, the second in order from the
sun, its orbit lying between that of Mercury and that of
the Earth, at a mean distance from the sun of about
67,000,000 miles. Its diameter is 7,700 miles, and its
sidereal period 224.7 days. As the morning star, it was
called by the ancients Lucifer; as the evening star,
3. (Alchem.) The metal copper; -- probably so designated from
the ancient use of the metal in making mirrors, a mirror
being still the astronomical symbol of the planet Venus.
4. (Zool.) Any one of numerous species of marine bivalve
shells of the genus Venus or family Veneridae. Many of
these shells are large, and ornamented with beautiful
frills; others are smooth, glossy, and handsomely colored.
Some of the larger species, as the round clam, or quahog,
are valued for food.
Venus's basin (Bot.), the wild teasel; -- so called because
the connate leaf bases form a kind of receptacle for
water, which was formerly gathered for use in the toilet.
Also called Venus's bath.
Venus's basket (Zool.), an elegant, cornucopia-shaped,
hexactinellid sponge (Euplectella speciosa) native of
the East Indies. It consists of glassy, transparent,
siliceous fibers interwoven and soldered together so as to
form a firm network, and has long, slender, divergent
anchoring fibers at the base by means of which it stands
erect in the soft mud at the bottom of the sea. Called
also Venus's flower basket, and Venus's purse.
(a) (Bot.) Same as Lady's comb.
(b) (Zool.) A species of Murex (Murex tenuispinus). It
has a long, tubular canal, with a row of long, slender
spines along both of its borders, and rows of similar
spines covering the body of the shell. Called also
Venus's fan (Zool.), a common reticulated, fanshaped
gorgonia (Gorgonia flabellum) native of Florida and the
West Indies. When fresh the color is purple or yellow, or
a mixture of the two.
Venus's flytrap. (Bot.) See Flytrap, 2.
Venus's girdle (Zool.), a long, flat, ribbonlike, very
delicate, transparent and iridescent ctenophore (Cestum
Veneris) which swims in the open sea. Its form is due to
the enormous development of two spheromeres. See Illust.
Venus's hair (Bot.), a delicate and graceful fern
(Adiantum Capillus-Veneris) having a slender, black and
shining stem and branches.
Venus's hair stone (Min.), quartz penetrated by acicular
crystals of rutile.
Venus's looking-glass (Bot.), an annual plant of the genus
Specularia allied to the bellflower; -- also called
Venus's navelwort (Bot.), any one of several species of
Omphalodes, low boraginaceous herbs with small blue or
Venus's pride (Bot.), an old name for Quaker ladies. See
Venus's purse. (Zool.) Same as Venus's basket, above.
Venus's shell. (Zool.)
(a) Any species of Cypraea; a cowrie.
(b) Same as Venus's comb, above.
(c) Same as Venus, 4.
(a) (Bot.) Any plant of the genus Cypripedium. See
(b) (Zool.) Any heteropod shell of the genus Carinaria.