fissure

noun
fis·​sure | \ ˈfi-shər How to pronounce fissure (audio) \

Definition of fissure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a narrow opening or crack of considerable length and depth usually occurring from some breaking or parting a fissure in the earth's crust
2a : a natural cleft between body parts or in the substance of an organ
b : a break or slit in tissue usually at the junction of skin and mucous membrane
3 : a separation or disagreement in thought or viewpoint : schism fissures in a political party

fissure

verb
fissured; fissuring

Definition of fissure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to break into fissures : cleave

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Synonyms for fissure

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of fissure in a Sentence

Noun a fissure in the Earth's crust a deep fissure in the ice
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In Scotland last week, a yawning political fissure widened. Alasdair Lane, Forbes, "Is Scotland On Its Way To Independence?," 11 May 2021 The absence of China and Russia from the list reflects another fissure between global heavyweights embroiled in a series of economic and human rights disputes. Joel Gehrke, Washington Examiner, "China hollers after Canada leads condemnation of hostage diplomacy," 16 Feb. 2021 What if the defining fissure in our post-pandemic world doesn’t prove to be between America and China, left and right, or rich and poor? Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, "Millennials bore COVID’s economic brunt. Will boomers help them out?," 25 Mar. 2021 First images taken during the night and early morning hours by the crew of a Coast Guard helicopter show a 2,6 km long slow-flowing lava flow, feed by a 200 to 500 meters (roughly 1,640 feet) long fissure eruption. David Bressan, Forbes, "What May Be The Consequences Of The Volcanic Eruption On Iceland’s Reykjanes Peninsula?," 20 Mar. 2021 The fissure eruption began at around 8:45 p.m. Friday in the Geldinga Valley, about 32 kilometers (20 miles) southwest of the capital, Reykjavik, the Met Office said. BostonGlobe.com, "Eruption of Iceland volcano is easing and is not affecting flights," 20 Mar. 2021 Their decision, just hours after a violent mob had stormed the Capitol, has repelled many of the party’s corporate benefactors, exposed a fissure with the Senate Republican leadership and tarred an element of the party as insurrectionists. New York Times, "How Gerrymandering Will Protect Republicans Who Challenged the Election," 19 Jan. 2021 The explosion is considered small, with lava leeching from a 546-yard-long fissure vent. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, "Icelandic Volcano Erupts After 6,000 Years of Dormancy," 22 Mar. 2021 In total, the fissure was about 1,640 to 2,640 feet wide, with lava spewing as high as 328 feet, the meteorological office's Bjarki Friis told Reuters. Rachel Chang, Travel + Leisure, "This Famous Volcano in Iceland Is Erupting — See the Stunning Photos," 22 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The statements made by Camille Locht and Jean-Paul Mira fed into a world already fissured by deep-rooted racial and economic discrimination. Gale Ure, Quartz Africa, "African scientists must make sure they are part of the search for a coronavirus vaccine," 25 Apr. 2020 Even before Saturday’s major aftershock, which fissured more roads and prompted more landslides, Puerto Rico estimated damages from a 6.4-magnitude quake on Tuesday at $110 million. Patricia Mazzei, New York Times, "‘Too Much’: Dread Fills Puerto Ricans as New Earthquake Stuns Island," 11 Jan. 2020 This land is made of igneous rock fissured with gold. Juliana Hanle, Scientific American, "The Fight for the Reindeer," 18 Nov. 2019 An early morning alert issued by the U.S. Geological Survey reported sporadic eruptions from three Kilauea volcano fissures shooting lava 180 feet into the air. Matthew Cappucci, Washington Post, "Fine, glass tendrils — Pele’s hair — are flying around Big Island after explosive eruption," 11 June 2018 Over the past week, the lava erupting from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano fissures advanced through two small residential subdivisions along Kapoho Bay, reaching the Pacific Ocean, and wiping out nearly a hundred homes. Alan Taylor, The Atlantic, "Photo Updates From Kilauea: Dozens More Homes Destroyed," 6 June 2018 The trunk was fissured at the base, creating a seam wide enough to slip into—in other words, an absolutely perfect hiding place. David Gilbert, The New Yorker, "Fungus," 4 June 2017 This is far from the first time that fissures within the Republican party over immigration have been on public display. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "The biggest political story no one is talking about," 17 May 2018 About 100 million years ago, shifts in tectonic plates caused the region’s foundational limestone to begin to crack and fissure. Jennifer Billock, Smithsonian, "Descend into the World’s Iciest Gateway to Hell," 30 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fissure.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fissure

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1656, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for fissure

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French fissure, borrowed from Latin fissūra "splitting, crack, opening," from fissus, past participle of findere "to split, cleave" + -ūra -ure — more at bite entry 1

Verb

derivative of fissure entry 1

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Time Traveler for fissure

Time Traveler

The first known use of fissure was in the 14th century

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Statistics for fissure

Last Updated

14 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fissure.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fissure. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for fissure

fissure

noun

English Language Learners Definition of fissure

: a narrow opening or crack

fissure

noun
fis·​sure | \ ˈfi-shər How to pronounce fissure (audio) \

Kids Definition of fissure

: a narrow opening or crack

fissure

noun
fis·​sure | \ ˈfish-ər, British also ˈfish-yu̇r How to pronounce fissure (audio) \

Medical Definition of fissure

1 : a natural cleft between body parts or in the substance of an organ: as
a : any of several clefts separating the lobes of the liver
b : any of various clefts between bones or parts of bones in the skull
c : any of the deep clefts of the brain especially : one of those located at points of elevation in the walls of the ventricles — compare sulcus
2 : a break or slit in tissue usually at the junction of skin and mucous membrane fissure of the lip
3 : a linear developmental imperfection in the enamel of a tooth

Other Words from fissure

fissured \ ˈfish-​ərd, British also ˈfish-​yu̇rd How to pronounce fissure (audio) \ adjective

Comments on fissure

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