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From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary
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Origin: L. Nereis, -idis, gr, a daughter of Nereus, a nymph of the sea, fr. Nereus, an ancient sea god; akin to wet, Skr. Nara water, cf. Gr. To flow.

1. A sea nymph, one of the daughters of Nereus, who were attendants upon neptune, and were represented as riding on sea horses, sometimes with the human form entire, and sometimes with the tail of a fish.

2. (Science: zoology) Any species of nereis. The word is sometimes used for similar annelids of other families.