ova·ry | \ ˈō-və-rē , 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

This shot of a progestin prevents the release of an egg from the ovaries for three months. Jane E. Brody, New York Times, "Contraception for Teenagers," 19 Feb. 2018 Between days five and seven of your cycle, as your period wraps up, just one follicle continues to grow, and the others are absorbed back into your ovaries. Korin Miller, SELF, "Is There Any Reliable Way to Make Your Period Come Faster?," 11 July 2018 Females need blood's protein to develop their ovaries and make more mosquitoes. Ned Rozell, Anchorage Daily News, "Only female mosquitoes bother us (and other facts about the insects Alaskans love to hate)," 7 July 2018 Still another drew on science, ruling that driving would damage their ovaries. The Economist, "How to ensure Muhammad bin Salman’s reforms succeed," 23 June 2018 This means, if the subspecies is to be preserved, that one or both of them will have to have some eggs removed from their ovaries and combined with stored sperm in a Petri dish. The Economist, "IVF may bring northern white rhinos back from the brink of extinction," 4 July 2018 Only when the two are ready to mate will ovaries and egg-laying machinery populate the female’s genital tract, while the male sprouts testes. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Alternatives to Heterosexual Pairings, Brought to You By Non-Human Animals," 28 June 2018 The first was administered some time between days six to eight to the women taking drugs to stimulate the ovaries to make more eggs, the second before embryo transfer, and the third after embryo transfer. Ariana Eunjung Cha, Philly.com, "Acupuncture is a popular offering at fertility clinics, but it doesn't improve fertility, study says," 4 June 2018 Champ — a rotating 43-foot-high neon outline of a uterus with fiberglass boxing gloves in place of ovaries — opened outside the Standard Hotel in Hollywood this week. Jane Drinkard, The Cut, "Giant Uterus Comes to Sunset Boulevard in the Name of Art," 28 Feb. 2018

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

21 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for ovary

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 \
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 \
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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