mu·​ci·​lag·​i·​nous ˌmyü-sə-ˈla-jə-nəs How to pronounce mucilaginous (audio)
: of, relating to, full of, or secreting mucilage
mucilaginously adverb

Did you know?

Unlike its meanings, there's nothing terribly sticky about the origin and use of mucilaginous. Like thousands of other words in the English language, mucilaginous (and the noun mucilage) oozed out of Latin during the 15th century. Mucilage is from Late Latin's word for "mucus," mucilago, and is used for the gelatinous substance found in various plants, such as legumes or seaweeds. Mucilaginous stuck as the noun's adjective form and is used by scientists and foodies alike for sticky or mucous things.

Examples of mucilaginous in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Water absorption creates a mucilaginous gel around the seed. Science & Food, Discover Magazine, 30 July 2013 The cells, each measuring 10 to 20 microns, are joined together in chains by mucilaginous links. Discover Magazine, 3 June 2015 Doesn’t mucilaginous coffee-bean wastewater sound better now? Tamar Adler, Vogue, 23 Nov. 2020 When the air is really filled with hot particulate matter, mucilaginous herbs like mullein, marshmallow root, and licorice root are useful tools for soothing irritated respiratory tissue. Aliza Abarbanel, Bon Appétit, 29 Sep. 2020 The fresh, grassy taste is often overshadowed by its mucilaginous (uh, slimy) quality. Ali Francis, Bon Appétit, 2 Sep. 2020 Like chia seeds, aloe, and okra, sea moss is a mucilaginous food. Adele Jackson-Gibson, Good Housekeeping, 17 Jan. 2020 All parts of the plant are edible raw and have a very mild flavor, as well as a somewhat mucilaginous quality (similar to okra). Glenn Jackson, Bon Appetit, 9 May 2017 All parts of the plant are edible raw and have a very mild flavor, as well as a somewhat mucilaginous quality (similar to okra). Bon Appetit, 9 May 2017 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'mucilaginous.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English muscilaginous, from Late Latin mucilaginosus, from mucilagin-, mucilago

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of mucilaginous was in the 15th century


Dictionary Entries Near mucilaginous

Cite this Entry

“Mucilaginous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Medical Definition


mu·​ci·​lag·​i·​nous ˌmyü-sə-ˈlaj-ə-nəs How to pronounce mucilaginous (audio)
: relating to, resembling, containing, or secreting mucilage
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