\ 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 The disabled Army veteran suffers from lung disease. Brian Chasnoff,, "‘I want my vote to count’ — By the hundreds, voters are hand-delivering their mail-in ballots to Bexar County’s elections office. They don’t trust the Postal Service.," 16 Oct. 2020 Joshua Hillman, a Harvard Law School student from Prattville who was born with cystic fibrosis, a genetic, life-threatening lung disease without a cure, said he was frequently hospitalized in high school before the ACA was passed. Howard Koplowitz |, al, "Jones, Alabamians with preexisting conditions warn of consequences if Obamacare struck down," 16 Oct. 2020 Nearly all of the company’s sales last year were derived from its treatments for the genetic lung disease. Joseph Walker, WSJ, "Vertex Shares Plunge After Biotech Drops Closely Watched Drug Prospect," 15 Oct. 2020 Although a cough and overall weakness can persist for two weeks, especially in elderly people and those that have chronic lung disease. USA Today, "Is it the flu or COVID-19? How to tell the difference," 13 Oct. 2020 The 5,005 Ohio deaths reported as of Monday now make COVID-19 at least the seventh-leading cause of death in the state, following heart disease, cancer, accidents, lung disease, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease. Jessie Balmert, The Enquirer, "Live: Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine gives update as state passes 5,000 COVID-19 deaths," 13 Oct. 2020 The risk factors for severe Covid-19 include older age, lung disease or heart disease, or obesity, according to the CDC. Shelby Lin Erdman, CNN, "Even 'mild' Covid-19 can be a lengthy, challenging illness," 8 Oct. 2020 The dead dolphins had severe lung disease and degenerated adrenal glands—organs that regulate hormones, the immune system, responses to stress, and more. Brishti Basu, National Geographic, "Wildfire smoke may harm whales and dolphins: Here’s what we know," 30 Sep. 2020 Scott Harkonen, the former CEO of biotech firm InterMune, was convicted of wire fraud in 2009 but the drug his company developed, Esbriet, was helpful to patients with a type of obstructive lung disease. Matthew Herper, STAT, "Eager for a Covid vaccine, Trump now trusts drug companies he previously vilified," 30 Sep. 2020

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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Time Traveler for lung

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for lung

Last Updated

21 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lung.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for lung


How to pronounce lung (audio)

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

Nglish: Translation of lung for Spanish Speakers

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

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