cistern

noun cis·tern \ ˈsis-tərn \
Updated on: 28 Nov 2017

Definition of cistern

1 : an artificial reservoir (such as an underground tank) for storing liquids and especially water (such as rainwater)
2 : a large usually silver vessel formerly used (as in cooling wine) at the dining table
3 : a fluid-containing sac or cavity in an organism

Recent Examples of cistern from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of cistern

Middle English, from Latin cisterna, from cista box, chest — more at chest

Other Building Terms


CISTERN Defined for English Language Learners

cistern

noun

Definition of cistern for English Language Learners

  • : an underground container that is used for collecting and storing rainwater

  • : a tank that holds the water for a toilet

  • : a tank on the roof of a building that holds water for the building


CISTERN Defined for Kids

cistern

noun cis·tern \ ˈsi-stərn \

Definition of cistern for Students

: an artificial reservoir or tank for storing water usually underground

Medical Dictionary

cistern

noun cis·tern \ ˈsis-tərn \

medical Definition of cistern

: a fluid-containing sac or cavity in an organism


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allowing a liquid or gas to pass through

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