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 Ovarian cysts are solid pockets within or on the surface of an ovary that may cause issues such as bloating, swelling or pain in the pelvic area, according to the Mayo Clinic. Alexia Fernandez, PEOPLE.com, "Hilary Swank Sues SAG-AFTRA’s 'Barbaric' Health Plan After Being Denied Coverage for Ovarian Cysts," 9 Sep. 2020 Dermoids, which are cysts that can have hair, bones, teeth, or skin. Cystadenomas, which show up on the surface of the ovary and can be filled with a watery or mucus-based fluid, according to the Mayo Clinic. Korin Miller, SELF, "9 Signs You're Dealing With a Ruptured Ovarian Cyst," 18 Aug. 2020 These hormones signal the brain to release the hormones responsible for stimulating your ovaries...which in turn tell your uterus to menstruate. Taylyn Washington-harmon, Health.com, "Why Is My Period Late—Could Stress Be the Cause?," 14 May 2020 Wages Garnished Monique Davis went to Jackson Hospital when her ovaries burst in 2017. al, "This Alabama hospital sued more than 1,000 patients last year. Some owed just $150," 10 Feb. 2020 This can especially be an issue after menopause, when your ovaries are no longer producing as much of the hormone progesterone, which can help counteract the estrogen. Erika Stallings, SELF, "Why Are Uterine Cancer Rates Rising So Drastically in Black Women?," 6 Nov. 2019 Eliza Paris was 25 years old when she was diagnosed with stage four appendix cancer, requiring 12 rounds of chemotherapy and an 18-hour surgery to remove her ovaries, gallbladder, spleen, appendix and part of her colon. NBC News, "Cancer hospitals like Memorial Sloan Kettering fight cancer and the coronavirus at the same time," 26 May 2020 The best time to irradiate, the two found, was 5.5 to 5.7 days into the pupal stage, when the adult fly’s ovaries and testes were developing and thus most sensitive to radiation. Sarah Zhang, The Atlantic, "The U.S. Is Spending Millions of Dollars Rearing Flesh-Eating Worms," 26 May 2020 The hCG trigger shot, for instance, can cause ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, a condition that can result in painful, swollen ovaries. Christina Caron, New York Times, "Getting Pregnant With IUI: What You Need to Know," 18 Apr. 2020

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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Time Traveler for ovary

Time Traveler

The first known use of ovary was in 1658

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Last Updated

18 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ovary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ovary. Accessed 20 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for ovary


How to pronounce ovary (audio)

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

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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