la·​cu·​na | \ lə-ˈkü-nə How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -ˈkyü- \
plural lacunae\ lə-​ˈkyü-​(ˌ)nē How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -​ˈkü-​ˌnī \ also lacunas\ lə-​ˈkü-​nəz How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -​ˈkyü-​ \

Definition of lacuna

1 : a blank space or a missing part : gap the evident lacunae in his story— Shirley Hazzard also : deficiency sense 1 despite all these lacunae, those reforms were a vast improvement New Republic
2 : a small cavity, pit, or discontinuity in an anatomical structure

Other Words from lacuna

lacunar \ lə-​ˈkü-​nər How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -​ˈkyü-​ \ or less commonly lacunate \ lə-​ˈkü-​nət How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -​ˈkyü-​ , -​ˌnāt ; ˈla-​kyə-​ˌnāt \ adjective

Did you know?

Exploring the etymology of lacuna involves taking a plunge into the pit—or maybe a leap into the lacus (that's the Latin word for "lake"). Latin speakers modified lacus into lacuna and used it to mean "pit," "cleft," or "pool." English speakers borrowed the term in the 17th century. It is usually pluralized as lacunae; however, lacunas is an accepted variant plural. Another English word that traces its origin to lacuna is lagoon, which came to us by way of Italian and French.

Examples of lacuna in a Sentence

She found a lacuna in the historical record. attributes many of the nation's problems to a lacuna of leadership at the top
Recent Examples on the Web This lacuna reflects a widespread documentary practice that’s also a conventional lapse in aesthetic judgment. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 8 Apr. 2022 The reason is misinformation for sure, and more fundamentally a lacuna in thinking prompted by an emotional reaction. Ryan Craig, Forbes, 15 Oct. 2021 The alternative outcome goes unmentioned thanks to a giant lacuna that exists in half of America’s mental landscape, and in the mental landscape of 99% of the media. WSJ, 8 Oct. 2021 The rest of Marie’s biography is an open conjecture, and Groff rides into that lacuna on a noble steed. Washington Post, 31 Aug. 2021 This lacuna in our knowledge should be promptly addressed experimentally with MHV, MERS-CoV, SARS-CoV-1, and SARS-CoV-2. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 30 Aug. 2021 That is the weird lacuna at the heart of this dust-up. Jacob Silverman, The New Republic, 4 June 2021 This lacuna should be filled by two recent books - Charles Townsend’s ‘The Partition’ and Ivan Gibbons ‘Partition’. Mike O'sullivan, Forbes, 11 Apr. 2021 The lacuna is a reminder: Despite the emerging consensus that the GOP is a working-class party, there is little agreement on what such a party should stand for. Matthew Continetti, National Review, 3 Apr. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of lacuna

1652, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lacuna

Latin, pool, pit, gap — more at lagoon

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Last Updated

27 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Lacuna.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for lacuna


la·​cu·​na | \ lə-ˈk(y)ü-nə How to pronounce lacuna (audio) \
plural lacunae\ -​ˈkyü-​(ˌ)nē How to pronounce lacuna (audio) , -​ˈkü-​ˌnī How to pronounce lacuna (audio) \

Medical Definition of lacuna

: a small cavity, pit, or discontinuity in an anatomical structure: as
a : one of the follicles in the mucous membrane of the urethra
b : one of the minute cavities in bone or cartilage occupied by the osteocytes

Other Words from lacuna

lacunar \ -​ˈk(y)ü-​nər How to pronounce lacuna (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on lacuna

Nglish: Translation of lacuna for Spanish Speakers


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