ab·​do·​men | \ ˈab-də-mən How to pronounce abdomen (audio) , -ˌdō-; əb-ˈdō-mən, ab- How to pronounce abdomen (audio) \

Definition of abdomen

1 : the part of the body between the thorax and the pelvis also : the cavity of this part of the trunk containing the chief viscera
2 : the posterior section of the body behind the thorax in an arthropod — see insect illustration

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Other Words from abdomen

abdominal \ ab-​ˈdä-​mə-​nᵊl How to pronounce abdominal (audio) , əb-​ How to pronounce abdominal (audio) , -​ˈdäm-​nᵊl \ adjective
abdominally \ ab-​ˈdä-​mə-​nᵊl-​ē How to pronounce abdominally (audio) , əb-​ , -​ˈdäm-​nᵊl-​ē \ adverb

Synonyms for abdomen


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Examples of abdomen in a Sentence

showed us a tiny tattoo on her abdomen, right next to her belly button
Recent Examples on the Web According to police reports, four bullets were retrieved from Martin during an autopsy the next morning by a deputy state medical examiner: one from his right lower back, from his left lower back, from his abdomen and one from his shirt. oregonlive, "Grand jury finds no criminal wrongdoing by Portland police in fatal shooting of Lane C. Martin, 31, in SE Portland," 14 Oct. 2019 Russell French was shot in his chest and abdomen and lost a kidney. NBC News, "DA declines to bring charges against off-duty Los Angeles officer who fatally shot man at Costco," 25 Sep. 2019 Named Indrasaurus wangi as a nod to the mythical encounter, the unfortunate reptile was found within the abdomen of a feathered dinosaur known as Microraptor. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "Rare fossil in a fossil reveals a dinosaur's surprising last meal," 11 July 2019 According to journalist Dionisio Soldevila, the bullet exited Ortiz’s body from his abdomen. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "David Ortiz Shooting Doesn't Look Like an Attempted Robbery," 10 June 2019 Iowa sophomore Luka Garza started this season in recovery after a nine-pound benign cyst was removed from his abdomen. Luke Meredith, The Seattle Times, "Sophomore Luka Garza on a tear for surging Hawkeyes," 5 Feb. 2019 The leg was removed, but the infection had spread to her abdomen, and now Whitehead is in critical condition, according to Suncoast News Network. Joe Mario Pedersen, orlandosentinel.com, "Flesh-eating bacteria gives Florida woman a fight for her life after swim at the beach: report," 8 Nov. 2019 The man was shot in the abdomen and is hospitalized. Janelle Griffith, NBC News, "2-year-old shot dead in mother's arms, second child shot in Philadelphia over weekend," 21 Oct. 2019 Further imaging of his abdomen and pelvis revealed a large hernia containing part of his colon, as well as a huge abscess, considerable tissue damage, and fluid collection. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Man has massive, rotting scrotum removed after avoiding doctors for decades," 18 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abdomen.' 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 abdomen

circa 1541, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for abdomen

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French, borrowed from Latin abdōmen "fat underpart of an animal, belly, paunch," of uncertain origin

Note: Often seen as a derivative of abdere, "to hide, conceal," i.e., "that which is hidden," based on a nominal ablaut form *dhoh1- from the root *dheh1- "put." However, Latin abdōmen refers primarily to a body part of animals, and more or less humorously of humans; such usage suggests something prominent rather than something concealed, so the derivation looks somewhat unlikely.

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Time Traveler for abdomen

Time Traveler

The first known use of abdomen was circa 1541

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Statistics for abdomen

Last Updated

9 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Abdomen.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abdomen. Accessed 12 December 2019.

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More Definitions for abdomen


How to pronounce abdomen (audio) How to pronounce abdomen (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of abdomen

: the part of the body below the chest that contains the stomach and other organs
: the rear part of an insect's body


ab·​do·​men | \ ˈab-də-mən How to pronounce abdomen (audio) , ab-ˈdō- \

Kids Definition of abdomen

1 : the part of the body between the chest and the hips including the cavity containing the stomach and other digestive organs
2 : the hind part of the body of an arthropod (as an insect)


ab·​do·​men | \ ˈab-də-mən, -ˌdō-; əb-ˈdō-mən, ab- How to pronounce abdomen (audio) \

Medical Definition of abdomen

1a : the part of the body between the thorax and the pelvis with the exception of the back

called also belly

b : the cavity of this part of the trunk lined by the peritoneum, enclosed by the body walls, the diaphragm, and the pelvic floor, and containing the visceral organs (as the stomach, intestines, and liver)
c : the portion of this cavity between the diaphragm and the brim of the pelvis — compare pelvic cavity
2 : the posterior often elongated region of the body behind the thorax in arthropods

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Comments on abdomen

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a period of high artistic development

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