An abnormal and persistent fear of spiders. Sufferers of arachnophobia experience undue anxiety even though they realize that the risk of encountering a spider and being harmed by it is small or non-existent. This phobia was exploited in a 1990 movie “Arachnophobia”. The word is derived from the Greek ‘arachne’ (spider) and ‘phobos’ (fear) after the mythical Arachne, a maiden who was a skilled weaver, whom the goddess Athena turned into a spider on being challenged to a weaving contest.
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