ova·​ry | \ ˈō-və-rē How to pronounce ovary (audio) , ˈōv-rē\
plural ovaries

Definition of ovary

1 : one of the typically paired essential female reproductive organs that produce eggs and in vertebrates female sex hormones
2 : the enlarged rounded usually basal portion of the pistil or gynoecium of an angiospermous plant that bears the ovules and consists of one or more carpels — see flower illustration

Examples of ovary in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

All participants were given standard hormone therapy (an aromatase inhibitor or tamoxifen) as well as a medication that shuts down the ovaries' production of estrogen. Samantha Lauriello, Health.com, "A New Breast Cancer Treatment Can Extend the Lives of Younger Patients, Study Finds," 4 June 2019 All of the women were given standard hormonal therapy -- an aromatase inhibitor or tamoxifen -- plus a medication that shuts down the ovaries' production of estrogen. Amy Norton, CBS News, "Newer drug extends lives of young breast cancer patients, study finds," 3 June 2019 That means a needle, under ultrasound guidance, is advanced into the ovaries to extract eggs. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "What Is Surrogacy? The Process, Types, and Costs, Explained by Experts," 1 May 2019 When the larvae were removed, insulin levels rose significantly — and injecting the adults with insulin caused their ovaries to reactivate even when the larvae were still around. Quanta Magazine, "How Insulin Helped Create Ant Societies," 14 Aug. 2018 So to reach the ovaries, scientists need to use a special tool with an ultrasound probe and needle at the end to aspirate the egg cells. Alessandra Potenza, The Verge, "Inside the high-tech plot to save the northern white rhino from extinction," 6 Apr. 2018 Endometriosis occurs when tissues that line the uterus grow outside the uterus, in places like the ovaries or the fallopian tubes. Sonja Haller, USA TODAY, "Julianne Hough and husband Brooks Laich are 'going through IVF' with no 'shame or guilt'," 19 June 2019 For instance, harvest ovarian tissue from individual women inevitably raises the issue of person-to-person variation: not all ovaries are built the same. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "How Artificial Ovaries Could Expand Fertility Options For Chemo Patients," 5 July 2018 Insulin resistance can cause your ovaries to make too many androgens, according to the Mayo Clinic. Mary Claire Lagroue, SELF, "Can Diet and Exercise Actually Improve PCOS Symptoms?," 23 Apr. 2019

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

1658, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ovary

New Latin ovarium, from Latin ovum egg

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Statistics for ovary

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

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The first known use of ovary was in 1658

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English Language Learners Definition of ovary

: one of usually two organs in women and female animals that produce eggs and female hormones
: the part of a flower where seeds are formed


ova·​ry | \ ˈō-və-rē How to pronounce ovary (audio) \
plural ovaries

Kids Definition of ovary

1 : one of the usually two organs in the body of female animals in which eggs are produced
2 : the larger rounded lower part of the pistil of a flower that contains the ovules in which the seeds are formed


ova·​ry | \ ˈōv-(ə-)rē How to pronounce ovary (audio) \
plural ovaries

Medical Definition of ovary

: one of the typically paired essential female reproductive organs that produce eggs and in vertebrates female sex hormones, that occur in the adult human as oval flattened bodies about one and a half inches (four centimeters) long suspended from the dorsal surface of the broad ligament of either side, that arise from the mesonephros, and that consist of a vascular fibrous stroma enclosing developing egg cells

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More from Merriam-Webster on ovary

Spanish Central: Translation of ovary

Nglish: Translation of ovary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ovary for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about ovary

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