lacuna

noun
la·​cu·​na | \lə-ˈkü-nə, -ˈkyü-\
plural lacunae\ lə-​ˈkyü-​(ˌ)nē , -​ˈkü-​ˌnī \ also lacunas\ lə-​ˈkü-​nəz , -​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

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Other Words from lacuna

lacunar \ lə-​ˈkü-​nər , -​ˈkyü-​ \ or less commonly lacunate \ lə-​ˈkü-​nət , -​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. 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

The hollow is rich and generative, a lacuna of a kind Ball has mastered. Ellie Robins, latimes.com, "Jesse Ball's 'Census' is an understated tale of a father and son taking stock of America," 9 Mar. 2018 But at least part of this outrage lacuna must be attributable to the distorting effects of partisanship. Jonah Goldberg, National Review, "American Nationalists Are Awfully Quiet about Russia," 16 Feb. 2018 Obviously the giant lacuna in that sort of analysis is that there was segregation in the country, the status of women, status of gay people, etc. Isaac Chotiner, Slate Magazine, "Why corporate America is so much more awful than it used to be.," 29 Sep. 2017 The lacuna bespeaks incuriosity about the wife of the great man, which Merz was at no pains to correct. Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker, "Marisa Merz’s Factory of Dreams," 30 Jan. 2017

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.

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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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Dictionary Entries near lacuna

lactoyl

lac tree

Lactuca

lacuna

lacunal

lacunary

lacune

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Time Traveler for lacuna

The first known use of lacuna was in 1652

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More Definitions for lacuna

lacuna

noun

English Language Learners Definition of lacuna

: a gap or blank space in something : a missing part

lacuna

noun
la·​cu·​na | \lə-ˈk(y)ü-nə \
plural lacunae\ -​ˈkyü-​(ˌ)nē , -​ˈkü-​ˌnī \

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 \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on lacuna

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lacuna

Spanish Central: Translation of lacuna

Nglish: Translation of lacuna for Spanish Speakers

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