spleen

noun
\ ˈsplēn How to pronounce spleen (audio) \

Definition of spleen

1 : a highly vascular ductless organ that is located in the left abdominal region near the stomach or intestine of most vertebrates and is concerned with final destruction of red blood cells, filtration and storage of blood, and production of lymphocytes
2 obsolete : the seat of emotions or passions
3 archaic : melancholy
4 : feelings of anger or ill will often suppressed
5 obsolete : a sudden impulse or whim : caprice

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Synonyms & Antonyms for spleen

Synonyms

Antonyms

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malice, malevolence, ill will, spite, malignity, spleen, grudge mean the desire to see another experience pain, injury, or distress. malice implies a deep-seated often unexplainable desire to see another suffer. felt no malice toward their former enemies malevolence suggests a bitter persistent hatred that is likely to be expressed in malicious conduct. a look of dark malevolence ill will implies a feeling of antipathy of limited duration. ill will provoked by a careless remark spite implies petty feelings of envy and resentment that are often expressed in small harassments. petty insults inspired by spite malignity implies deep passion and relentlessness. a life consumed by motiveless malignity spleen suggests the wrathful release of latent spite or persistent malice. venting his spleen against politicians grudge implies a harbored feeling of resentment or ill will that seeks satisfaction. never one to harbor a grudge

Examples of spleen in a Sentence

vented her spleen and felt much better for having done so the bill's failure to pass in the legislature was due to nothing more than partisan spleen
Recent Examples on the Web That's because the spleen, which acts as a blood filter and plays a critical role in the immune system, is often damaged. NBC News, "Throughout pandemic, sickle cell patients suffer quietly at home," 28 Sep. 2020 Her injuries included a lacerated spleen and bleeding in her brain, police said. David Hernandez, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Woman badly hurt in hit-and-run crash in Midway District," 6 Dec. 2020 The spleen is something like a sieve, through which only young, flexible red blood cells can squeeze, said Silvia Portugal, a malaria specialist. Donald G. Mcneil Jr., Star Tribune, "A malaria mystery, partly solved: What happens when the rains end?," 14 Nov. 2020 These cells adhere to the walls of the veins and arteries, instead of being swept into the spleen, to be destroyed. Donald G. Mcneil Jr., Star Tribune, "A malaria mystery, partly solved: What happens when the rains end?," 14 Nov. 2020 The lymph system includes the lymph nodes as well as bone marrow, the spleen, and the thymus gland, the Mayo Clinic says. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Jeff Bridges Announced He’s Been Diagnosed With Lymphoma," 20 Oct. 2020 His spleen filled with blood and had to be surgically repaired. NBC News, "Throughout pandemic, sickle cell patients suffer quietly at home," 28 Sep. 2020 Because sickle cell damages the spleen, people with the disease are considered immunocompromised and at high risk for serious complications from Covid-19. Usha Lee Mcfarling, STAT, "‘They are really afraid’: Fears about Covid-19 are complicating care for patients with sickle cell," 17 Sep. 2020 Cook is now on a ventilator after aspirating during a surgery to remove his spleen, the post states. Maggy Mcdonel, The Enquirer, "Firefighter in ‘very bad shape’ after crash involving drunk driver, fire department says," 24 Aug. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for spleen

Middle English splen, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French espleen, from Latin splen, from Greek splēn; akin to Latin lien spleen, Sanskrit plīhan

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Time Traveler for spleen

Time Traveler

The first known use of spleen was in the 14th century

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Statistics for spleen

Last Updated

31 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Spleen.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spleen. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for spleen

spleen

noun

English Language Learners Definition of spleen

: an organ located near your stomach that destroys worn-out red blood cells and produces white blood cells
literary : feelings of anger

spleen

noun
\ ˈsplēn How to pronounce spleen (audio) \

Kids Definition of spleen

: an organ near the stomach that destroys worn-out red blood cells and produces some of the white blood cells

spleen

noun
\ ˈsplēn How to pronounce spleen (audio) \

Medical Definition of spleen

: a highly vascular ductless abdominal organ of vertebrates that resembles a gland in organization but is closely associated with the circulatory system, that plays a role in the final destruction of red blood cells, filtration and storage of blood, and production of lymphocytes, and that in humans is a dark purplish flattened oblong object of a soft fragile consistency lying near the cardiac end of the stomach and consisting largely of blood and lymphoid tissue enclosed in a fibroelastic capsule from which trabeculae ramify through the tissue of the organ which is divisible into a loose friable red pulp in intimate connection with the blood supply and with red blood cells free in its interstices and a denser white pulp chiefly of lymphoid tissue condensed in masses about the small arteries

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