sterile

2 ENTRIES FOUND:

ster·ile

adjective \ˈster-əl, chiefly British -ˌī(-ə)l\

: not able to produce crops or plants

: not able to produce children, young animals, etc.

: not able to grow or develop

Full Definition of STERILE

1
a :  failing to bear or incapable of producing fruit or spores
b :  failing to produce or incapable of producing offspring <a sterile hybrid>
c :  incapable of germinating <sterile spores>
d of a flower :  neither perfect nor pistillate
2
a :  unproductive of vegetation <a sterile arid region>
b :  free from living organisms and especially microorganisms <a sterile syringe>
c :  lacking in stimulating emotional or intellectual quality :  lifeless <a sterile work of art>
ster·ile·ly \-ə(l)-lē\ adverb
ste·ril·i·ty \stə-ˈri-lə-tē\ noun

Examples of STERILE

  1. a sterile dressing for a wound
  2. <sterile couples sometimes choose to adopt needy children>

Origin of STERILE

Middle English steryle, from Latin sterilis; akin to Gothic stairo barren animal, Sanskrit starī sterile cow
First Known Use: 15th century

Other Microbiology Terms

pathogen, salmonella, tetanus

Rhymes with STERILE

ster·ile

adjective \ˈster-əl, chiefly British -ˌīl\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of STERILE

1
: failing to produce or incapable of producing offspring <a sterile hybrid>—compare infertile
2
: free from living organisms and especially microorganisms <a sterile syringe> <a sterile cyst>
ster·ile·ly \-əl-(l)ē\ adverb
ste·ril·i·ty \stə-ˈril-ət-ē\ noun, plural ste·ril·i·ties

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