gadfly |ˈɡadˌflī| noun (plural gadflies)

  • An annoying person, especially one who provokes others into action by criticism.
  • A fly that bites livestock, especially a horsefly, warble fly, or botfly.

ORIGIN late 16th century: from gad1, or obsolete gad goad, spike, from Old Norse gaddr, of Germanic origin; related to yard1.

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