bow·el | \ ˈbau̇(-ə)l \

Definition of bowel 

1 biology : intestine, gut also : one of the divisions of the intestines usually used in plural except in medical use the large bowel move your bowels

2 archaic : the seat of pity, tenderness, or courage usually used in plural

3 bowels plural : the interior parts especially : the deep or remote parts bowels of the earth

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Other words from bowel

bowelless \ˈbau̇(-ə)l-ləs \ adjective

Examples of bowel in a Sentence

a disease of the bowel They dug deep into the bowels of the earth. The engine room is down in the bowels of the ship.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Just know, Skarsgård’s unnamed, unblinking character didn’t end up in the bowels of pop culture’s most towering prison under the usual legal circumstances., "Handmaid’s Tale," 13 July 2018 Less visible in the bowels of the airport, Customs and Border Protection screening for incoming international passengers also has congealed regularly into long waits. Kevin Spear,, "Orlando airport's expanded facial screening touted by federal officials," 21 June 2018 Regardless, decorum was well gone by the time Trump made it to HC-5, a room in the bowels of the Capitol where Republicans usually huddle. Chad Pergram, Fox News, "Immigration fight is no picnic: Reps brawl, Dems jeer and cops search for Trump-accosting intern," 21 June 2018 Nearby, a cat bursts from the bowels of a mouldering armchair. NBC News, "Amid Trump's Mideast push, an abandoned building reminds Palestinians of past failures," 16 June 2018 Out in the dining room with the customers and in the bowels of the kitchen with the staff. Deirdre Donahue, USA TODAY, "Our review: Anthony Bourdain's 'Kitchen Confidential' captured restaurants' demented glory," 8 June 2018 The story takes a paranormal twist about midway through, as Milo and the surviving team approach a prehistoric life force hidden in the bowels of the cave. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction Chronicles: The Intoxicating Attraction of the Abyss," 8 June 2018 After Terry Rozier scored 21 points in the Celtics’ Feb. 11 loss to the Cavaliers, his older sister, Tre’Dasia Tucker, waited patiently for him in a hallway in the bowels of TD Garden. Adam Himmelsbach,, "‘Get on my back.’ How Terry Rozier and his sister bonded through struggle," 18 May 2018 Nearby at Bassiani, a cavernous club in the bowels of a football stadium, a similar scene unfolded as armed Georgian police stormed in, pushing patrons against the walls and the floor. The Economist, "Young Georgians fight for their right to party," 17 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bowel

Middle English, from Anglo-French buel, boel, from Medieval Latin botellus, from Latin, diminutive of botulus sausage

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Phrases Related to bowel

the bowels

Statistics for bowel

Last Updated

4 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bowel

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

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More Definitions for bowel



English Language Learners Definition of bowel

: the long tube in the body that helps digest food and carries solid waste out of the body

the bowels : the deep inner parts of something


bow·el | \ ˈbau̇-əl \

Kids Definition of bowel

1 : intestine usually used in pl.

2 : a part of the intestine the large bowel


bow·el | \ ˈbau̇(-ə)l \

Medical Definition of bowel 

: intestine, gut also : one of the divisions of the intestines usually used in plural except in medical use move your bowels surgery of the involved bowel

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Comments on bowel

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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