osmosis

play
noun os·mo·sis \ äz-ˈmō-səs , äs- \

Definition of osmosis

1 :movement of a solvent (such as water) through a semipermeable membrane (as of a living cell) into a solution of higher solute concentration that tends to equalize the concentrations of solute on the two sides of the membrane
2 :a process of absorption or diffusion (see diffusion 3a) suggestive of the flow of osmotic action; especially :a usually effortless often unconscious assimilation (see assimilation 4)
  • learned a number of languages by osmosis
  • —Roger Kimball

Examples of osmosis in a Sentence

  1. She seems to learn foreign languages by osmosis.

Recent Examples of osmosis from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of osmosis

New Latin, short for endosmosis

Other Chemical Engineering Terms


OSMOSIS Defined for English Language Learners

osmosis

play
noun

Definition of osmosis for English Language Learners

  • biology : the process that causes a liquid (especially water) to pass through the wall of a living cell

  • : an ability to learn and understand things gradually without much effort


OSMOSIS Defined for Kids

osmosis

play
noun os·mo·sis \ äs-ˈmō-səs , äz- \

Definition of osmosis for Students

:a passing of material and especially water through a membrane (as of a living cell) that will not allow all kinds of molecules to pass

Medical Dictionary

osmosis

play
noun os·mo·sis \ äz-ˈmō-səs , äs- \

medical Definition of osmosis

plural osmoses play \-ˌsēz\
:movement of a solvent through a semipermeable membrane (as of a living cell) into a solution of higher solute concentration that tends to equalize the concentrations of solute on the two sides of the membrane


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