al·​i·​men·​ta·​ry | \ ˌa-lə-ˈmen-t(ə-)rē How to pronounce alimentary (audio) \

Definition of alimentary

1 : of or relating to nourishment or nutrition
2 : furnishing sustenance or maintenance

Examples of alimentary in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web My only regret is not having the alimentary bandwidth to try this. Kim Westerman, Forbes, 15 June 2022 The film follows a sonic collective trio with rocky interpersonal dynamics, who take up residency at an institute devoted to culinary and alimentary performance and have to answer to the institute’s head, who has her own opinions about their work. Naman Ramachandran, Variety, 10 Feb. 2022 Diarrhea in aging cats can indicate hyperthyroidism or alimentary lymphoma. Star Tribune, 23 July 2021 More recently, in Phase I (from 27 years ago), cashew residue on stones suggests the monkeys were moving towards their present-day alimentary focus. The Economist, 27 June 2019 The Ember will encourage and enable alimentary experimentation. Justin Peters, Slate Magazine, 20 Dec. 2017 By the standard alimentary sequence, insects feed on plants or one another, and then birds hunt down insects. Natalie Angier, New York Times, 22 Sep. 2017 As an embryo develops, algae suffuses its body, but most becomes concentrated along its gut and alimentary canal. Brandon Keim, WIRED, 4 Apr. 2011 See More

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

First Known Use of alimentary

1608, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for alimentary

borrowed from French & New Latin; French alimentaire "relating to nourishment," going back to Middle French, borrowed from New Latin alimentārius, going back to Latin "relating to maintenance by charity, supported by charity," from alimentum "food, sustenance" + -ārius -ary entry 2 — more at aliment entry 1

Learn More About alimentary

Time Traveler for alimentary

Time Traveler

The first known use of alimentary was in 1608

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near alimentary



alimentary canal

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for alimentary

Cite this Entry

“Alimentary.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for alimentary


al·​i·​men·​ta·​ry | \ ˌal-ə-ˈment-ə-rē, -ˈmen-trē \

Medical Definition of alimentary

: of, concerned with, or relating to nourishment or to the function of nutrition : nutritive alimentary processes of the body

More from Merriam-Webster on alimentary

Nglish: Translation of alimentary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of alimentary for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!