\ ˈləŋ How to pronounce lung (audio) \

Definition of lung

1a : one of the usually paired compound saccular thoracic organs that constitute the basic respiratory organs of an air-breathing vertebrate
b : any of various respiratory organs of invertebrates
2a : a device enabling individuals abandoning a submarine to rise to the surface
b : a mechanical device for regularly introducing fresh air into and withdrawing stale air from the lung : respirator — compare iron lung

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Other Words from lung

lungful \ ˈləŋ-​ˌfu̇l How to pronounce lungful (audio) \ noun

Examples of lung in a Sentence

He filled his lungs with the clean. fresh air.

Recent Examples on the Web

Road conditions worsened as the Midwest gave way to plains country, where summer heat baked the earth dusty, and the sand clogged lungs and engines., "America’s military accomplished an amazing feat 100 years ago -- driving across country," 7 July 2019 Medical researchers have reported that sildenafil can boost performance in racehorses, which are prone to lung bleeding and edema after races. Kevin Krause, Dallas News, "Pharmacy owner whose drugs led to doped racehorses admits to peddling unsafe equine drugs," 5 July 2019 The fungus can cause disease in people who have weakened immune systems, damaged lungs or have allergies, the website states. Minyvonne Burke, NBC News, "1 patient died, 5 others infected from mold in operating room of Seattle Children's hospital," 4 July 2019 More: Doctors removed 7 pieces of popcorn from her son's lungs. Amy Haneline, USA TODAY, "Hot dogs cut wrong are the 'perfect size to get lodged into a child's throat'," 3 July 2019 Robertson's lung-busting sprints, regular as clockwork assists and aggy battles with world superstars on his wing seemed almost like a personal affront to Moreno., "Farewell Alberto Moreno: The Last Remnant of Liverpool's Banter Era," 2 July 2019 Staph infections are caused by germs commonly found on the skin or in the nose and can turn deadly if spread to the bloodstream, joints, bones, lungs or heart, according to the Mayo Clinic. Eric Todisco,, "12 Drug-Resistant Staph Infection Cases Confirmed in Pittsburgh Hospital — Including 6 Babies," 2 July 2019 In Denver, people in the lower-income neighborhoods of Globeville, Elyria and Swansea have suffered from asthma, cancer and heart-lung ailments — possibly related to air pollution. Bruce Finley, The Denver Post, "Suncor oil refinery operators hit by Colorado health department for emitting toxic gas," 1 July 2019 According to the lawsuit, Barbee suffered spine and rib fractures, a traumatic brain injury, lung contusions and several other physical and cognitive injuries from the crash., "Former Tigard cop injured in crash sues driver, driver’s ex-employer for $23.6 million," 28 June 2019

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for lung

Middle English lunge, from Old English lungen; akin to Old High German lungun lung, līhti light in weight — more at light

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Dictionary Entries near lung






lung book


Statistics for lung

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lung

The first known use of lung was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for lung



English Language Learners Definition of lung

: either one of the two organs that people and animals use to breathe air


\ ˈləŋ How to pronounce lung (audio) \

Kids Definition of lung

: either of two organs in the chest that are like bags and are the main breathing structure in animals that breathe air


\ ˈləŋ How to pronounce lung (audio) \

Medical Definition of lung

1a : one of the usually two compound saccular organs that constitute the basic respiratory organ of air-breathing vertebrates, that normally occupy the entire lateral parts of the thorax and consist essentially of an inverted tree of intricately branched bronchioles communicating with thin-walled terminal alveoli swathed in a network of delicate capillaries where the actual gaseous exchange of respiration takes place, and that in humans are somewhat flattened with a broad base resting against the diaphragm and have the right lung divided into three lobes and the left into two lobes
b : any of various respiratory organs of invertebrates
2 : a mechanical device for regularly introducing fresh air into and withdrawing stale air from the lungs : respirator — see iron lung

Other Words from lung

lunged adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on lung

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lung

Spanish Central: Translation of lung

Nglish: Translation of lung for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lung for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about lung

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