Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

villus

play
noun vil·lus \ˈvi-ləs\

Definition of villus

plural villi play \ˈvi-ˌlī, -(ˌ)lē\

  1. :  a small slender often vascular process: as a :  one of the minute finger-shaped processes of the mucous membrane of the small intestine that serve in the absorption of nutriment b :  one of the branching processes of the surface of the chorion of the developing embryo of most mammals that help to form the placenta



Origin of villus

New Latin, from Latin, tuft of shaggy hair — more at velvet


First Known Use: 1728


VILLUS Defined for Kids

villus

play
noun vil·lus \ˈvi-ləs\

Definition of villus for Students

plural villi \ˈvi-ˌlī, -lē\

  1. :  one of the tiny extensions shaped like fingers that line the small intestine and are active in absorbing nutrients




Medical Dictionary

villus

play
noun vil·lus \ˈvil-əs\

Medical Definition of villus

plural villi \-ˌī\play

  1. :  a small slender vascular process: asa:  one of the minute fingerlike processes which more or less thickly cover and give a velvety appearance to the surface of the mucous membrane of the small intestine and serve in the absorption of nutriment and of which each has a central blindly ending lacteal surrounded by blood capillaries and covered with epitheliumb:  one of the branching processes of the surface of the chorion of the developing embryo of most mammals that are restricted to particular areas or diffusely arranged and over parts of the surface become vascular and help to form the placenta



Illustration of villus


Learn More about villus

  1. Medical Dictionary: Definition of "villus" Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about "villus"


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up villus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

the Celtic May Day festival

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

prompt maudlin oily angry
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ