capsule

noun
cap·​sule | \ ˈkap-səl How to pronounce capsule (audio) , -(ˌ)sül also -ˌsyül\

Definition of capsule

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a membrane or sac enclosing a body part (such as a knee joint or kidney)
b : either of two layers of white matter in the cerebrum
2 : a closed receptacle containing spores or seeds: such as
a : a dry dehiscent usually many-seeded fruit composed of two or more carpels
b : the spore case of a moss
3 : a shell usually of gelatin for packaging something (such as a drug or vitamins) also : a usually medicinal or nutritional preparation for oral use consisting of the shell and its contents
4 : an often polysaccharide envelope surrounding a microorganism
5 : an extremely brief condensation : outline, survey capsules of history given to students
6a : a compact often sealed and detachable container or compartment
b : a small pressurized compartment or vehicle (as for space flight)

capsule

verb
capsuled; capsuling

Definition of capsule (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to equip with or enclose in a capsule
2 : to condense into or devise in a compact form capsuled the news

capsule

adjective

Definition of capsule (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : extremely brief a capsule biography
2 : small and very compact a capsule submarine

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Examples of capsule in a Sentence

Noun

took an antibiotic capsule three times a day for a week a capsule containing all sorts of items from our era that is to be opened 100 years from now

Verb

newscasts that capsule complex, important stories into one-minute bits for easy digestion by viewers

Adjective

capsule reviews of the latest offerings at the multiplex
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Re/Done and The Attico have a new capsule collection that emphasizes the power of creative collaboration between the two distinct fashion brands. Sara Radin, Teen Vogue, "The Attico and Re/Done Launched a Sustainable Capsule Collection," 16 May 2019 What was the inspiration for the capsule collection? Kerry Pieri, Harper's BAZAAR, "Virgil Abloh is King of the Collab, and Likes It That Way," 29 Apr. 2019 Again, CBD’s therapeutic potential on chronic pain is supported by scientific literature, although the 10 mg in these full-spectrum capsules is a lower dose than has been evaluated in any study. The Editors, Marie Claire, "10 Health Issues CBD Could Solve," 17 Apr. 2019 In celebration of Barbie's 60th birthday, Puma has revealed their latest capsule collection done in collaboration with the popular toy. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Puma Unveiled Its Latest Capsule Collection Inspired by Barbie," 2 Apr. 2019 This is not Maezawa's first experience booking a moon flight with SpaceX. The Japanese entrepreneur was also the person who booked a circumlunar flight using SpaceX's Dragon capsule and Falcon Heavy rocket, Musk announced tonight. Mike Wall, Space.com, "SpaceX Will Fly a Japanese Billionaire (and Artists, Too!) Around the Moon in 2023," 17 Sep. 2018 Bieber recently collaborated with the American denim staple on a 501 capsule collection, in anticipation of the brand’s anniversary next month. Cameron Bird, Vogue, "Denim in the Desert: Levi’s Celebrates Coachella With Hailey Bieber at Its Annual Pool Party," 15 Apr. 2019 Fortunately, Torrid has launched The Wedding Shop, a capsule collection designed exclusively for sizes 10-30. Tiffany Dodson, SELF, "Torrid Has Launched a New Wedding Dress Collection—and Everything Is Under $200," 11 Apr. 2019 The capsule collection sets out to revive the brand's original style with twelve new silhouettes in updated designs that were inspired by past prints. Charlotte Chilton, Town & Country, "Coco Shop's Debut Collection Is the Only Thing You'll Need for Your Next Vacation," 9 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

A capsule summary on Tuesday for an article about the decades-long rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Qatar omitted the context in describing the population of Qatar. New York Times, "Corrections: June 15, 2017," 14 June 2017 Capsule previews of Saturday's high school championships in baseball, softball, lacrosse and track and field. Hartford Courant, courant.com, "Previewing Saturday's High School Championships," 9 June 2017

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

Noun

circa 1693, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1859, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1938, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for capsule

Noun

French, from Latin capsula, diminutive of capsa box — more at case

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Statistics for capsule

Last Updated

19 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for capsule

The first known use of capsule was circa 1693

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More Definitions for capsule

capsule

noun

English Language Learners Definition of capsule

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a very small container that is filled with medicine and swallowed whole
: a small glass or plastic container that has something (such as a liquid) inside of it
: a small part of a spacecraft that is separate from the rest of the spacecraft and that is where people live and work

capsule

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of capsule (Entry 2 of 2)

: very short

capsule

noun
cap·​sule | \ ˈkap-səl How to pronounce capsule (audio) \

Kids Definition of capsule

1 : a case enclosing the seeds or spores of a plant
2 : a small case of material that contains medicine to be swallowed
3 : a closed compartment for travel in space

capsule

noun
cap·​sule | \ ˈkap-səl, -(ˌ)sül How to pronounce capsule (audio) \

Medical Definition of capsule

1a : a membrane or saclike structure enclosing a part or organ the capsule of the kidney
b : either of two layers or laminae of white matter in the cerebrum:
(1) : a layer that consists largely of fibers passing to and from the cerebral cortex and that lies internal to the lentiform nucleus

called also internal capsule

(2) : one that lies between the lentiform nucleus and the claustrum

called also external capsule

2 : a shell usually of gelatin for packaging something (as a drug or vitamins) also : a usually medicinal or nutritional preparation for oral use consisting of the shell and its contents
3 : a viscous or gelatinous often polysaccharide envelope surrounding certain microscopic organisms (as the pneumococcus)

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Comments on capsule

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